Council tax appeals

Appeal your council tax band

We do not decide which council tax band your home is in. That is done by a government agency, Valuation Office Agency (VOA) and is based on how much a property was worth on 1 April 1991.

If you have evidence that suggests the band for your home is wrong, contact the VOA to explain why you think it is wrong. The VOA may be able to review and change your band without you needing to formally challenge it.

If you are unable to use the VOA's online service, you can also contact the VOA by phone on 03000 501 501.

How to appeal

You can make a formal appeal to the VOA against the banding of your home when you become the new council tax payer for the property. Otherwise, the grounds for appeal are restricted to:

  • Where you believe that the banding should be changed because there has been a material increase or material reduction in the dwelling's value (these terms are explained below)
  • Where you start or stop using part of your dwelling to carry out a business, or the balance between domestic and business use changes
  • Where, following either of the above, or for any reason, the VOA has altered a list without a proposal having been made by a council tax payer.

A material increase in value may result from building, engineering or other work carried out on the dwelling. In these cases, revaluation does not take place until after a sale - so the person appealing would normally be the owner or resident.

A material reduction in value may result from the demolition of any part of the dwelling, any change in the physical state of the local area or an adaptation to make the dwelling suitable for use by someone with a physical disability. In these cases, revaluation should take place as soon as possible.

Re-banding will not take place if the increase or reduction in value is relatively small and not enough to move the dwelling to another band.

You can also appeal if you believe that your home should not be shown on the valuation list, for example, if you think it is not in itself separate, self-contained accommodation. Equally, you can appeal if you think that it should be shown in the list, for example, it was previously used for business purposes.

The appeal process has been designed to be as simple and straightforward as possible. You do not have to get an estate agent, solicitor, surveyor or any other person to help with your proposal.

Making an appeal does not allow you to stop paying your council tax. You should continue to pay your bill while waiting for the appeal decision.

What happens next

The VOA will make its decision within four months and will either:

  • Change your council tax band - Ealing Council will revise your bill and adjust your payments
  • Tell you why your band cannot be changed.

Appeal a VOA decision

If you disagree with the VOA's decision about your banding appeal, you have the right of further appeal to the valuation tribunal. The valuation tribunal is independent of the VOA. It's free, but you have to pay your own costs. You must appeal within three months of getting the VOA's decision.

If the tribunal agrees with you, the VOA will change your band and Ealing Council will update your council tax bill.