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The Council Tax you pay goes towards local services such as policing, fire services, education, parks and household rubbish collections, see our how my Council Tax is spent for more information.
During March we will send out new Council Tax bills showing how much your instalments will be from 1 April 2017.
Council Tax is charged on most homes, and there is one bill per home. Each home is placed in a valuation band from A to H, based on the amount it would have sold for on 1st April 1991.
The Valuation Office Agency, not the Council, gives a valuation band to every home. You may be able to appeal against the valuation band in certain circumstances, see The Valuation Office Agency for more information or call 03000 501501.
By law, you must continue to pay your Council Tax until a decision has been reached on any valuation appeal.
Preston City Council provides all of these services to you for £279.49 a year in Council Tax (Band D) – that’s just 77p a day. To find out more please see our page on how Council Tax is spent.
For information on the Council Tax rates in Preston for 2017/18 please see our Council Tax rates page.
To access a service that lets you securely view your Benefit or Council Tax account, open a My Preston online account today.
We can also offer council tax bills and benefit letters via email. You will first need to register with us using your email address. You will be asked some security questions and also asked to enter the reference numbers of the accounts you want to view.
You will find your account reference number on your benefit award letter or Council Tax rates bill.
If you would like to receive your bills and letters by secure e-mail please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Direct debit is the simplest and safest way to make payments. It is also the best and cheapest way for us to collect your Council Tax and Business Rates.
If you want to pay using this method you can set up a direct debit or complete and return the direct debit instruction on the back of your Council Tax bill.
Full Council Tax is payable where two or more adults live in a property. If you live alone, you are entitled to a 25% single person discount. However, you may still be entitled to a discount, please see our Council Tax discounts and reductions section.
If someone in your home is disabled and the property has facilities designed to meet their needs, you may be entitled to pay less Council Tax, please see our reduction for disabilities page for more details.
For properties that do not have to pay Council Tax please see our Council Tax and empty properties page. If you are a student you may receive a Council Tax discount or exemption, please see our student Council Tax page.
Empty and unfurnished properties could receive a 100% discount for the first two months, 50% discount for a further period of up to four months, then full Council Tax.
Second homes are charged to the full Council Tax level. These are furnished homes in which
no one lives. If your second home is job-related, for example it is empty because you are required to live elsewhere in a property provided for you due to your employment, you will be charged at 50% of the full Council Tax.
The Council can charge a premium for properties which have been empty and unfurnished for two years or more. The Council aims to cut the number of empty homes in Preston. Therefore, empty properties will be charged at full Council Tax plus 50% (one and a half times normal Council Tax).
Empty annexes and property left empty by service personnel can be exempt from this.
Information on Preston City Council’s spending and the requirements as the Council Tax Billing Authority can be found on the How Council Tax is spent page.
A separate leaflet with information for Lancashire County Council is included in your bill.
Financial information on the Lancashire Police and Crime Commissioner and Lancashire Combined Fire Authority can be found by clicking on the link in the text.
Bills issued from 1 April (the start of the financial year) will show payments in 10 monthly instalments. If you wish to pay over 12 months, please contact us in writing before 15
If you apply after this date, then we can only extend the number of instalments until March 2018.
If our assumption about the Council Tax liability is wrong, or you think you may be entitled to any discount, exemption or relief, please contact us.
If you are no longer entitled to a discount, exemption or relief, or a smaller discount should apply, you must notify us within 21 days or may face a penalty of £70.
This penalty may also apply if your property is subject to a premium and you fail to notify us that it should not apply, or the amount is incorrect.
If you have been refused a discount, exemption or relief or do not think you should be responsible for paying Council Tax, you can appeal to us in writing telling us why you think we have got it wrong. Please write to:
We will look at your case again and might ask for more information. If we don’t change our decision and you still don’t agree, you can appeal to the Valuation Tribunal.
The Council Tax is a priority bill that must be paid by everyone who is liable.
If Council Tax is not paid as and when it is due, we will take recovery action which could mean costs being added to your account.
If you are on a low income, you should make a claim for Council Tax Support directly to the council.
If you are claiming Universal Credit the DWP do not pay any support towards your Council Tax, you will need to claim this separately from Preston City Council.
The amount of support you are entitled to will depend on your income and household circumstances, for more information please see our Council Tax Support page.
If you require help with something in this section, please contact us.