Help with council tax or rates

Local council tax reduction schemes can help towards the cost of your council tax if you are on a low income. Council tax reduction schemes are different across the UK:

  • In England and Wales, each local council has its own council tax reduction scheme. The support available will depend on where you live.
  • In Scotland, there are national council tax reduction schemes. The support available is the same across each area.

In some areas, councils also have schemes where they can choose to offer extra support with council tax. These are sometimes called discretionary funds for council tax. In these areas, it may be possible to get an extra payment to help with your council tax, in addition to the normal council tax reduction scheme. These discretionary schemes have different names in different areas.

If you are a single person, or if your home has been adapted due to a disability, you may be able to get your council tax bill reduced.

If you live with another adult, such as an adult son or daughter, and they are on a low income, you can apply for a second adult rebate. This means your council tax bill could be reduced by up to 25%.

How to claim

Contact your local council to find out what support they offer. You should be able to find your local council’s contact details in your phone book, or by visiting one of the following websites:

Help with rates in Northern Ireland

If you cannot afford to pay your rates bill, there are different options available to help, including Housing Benefit and Rate Relief, or Rate Rebate if you are claiming Universal Credit.

If you are aged over 70 and you live alone, you might be eligible for eligible for Lone Pensioner Allowance. This gives you a 20% discount on your rates.

If you have had certain adaptions made to your home for health reasons, you might be eligible for Disabled Persons Allowance. This gives you a 25% discount on your rates.

If you are a tenant, or a co-ownership tenant with a share in the property, call the Housing Executive on 03448 920 902 or use text relay 18001 03448 920 902.

If you are a homeowner, call the Land & Property Service on 0300 200 7802 or use text relay 18001 0300 200 7801.

Before calling, make a list of all the money you have coming in (your income). You should also make a list for anyone living with you. The list should include any benefit payments.

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Back to Help with bills and housing costs

Housing Benefit

You may be able to get help with your rent payments if you have a low income.

Help with service charges

You might be able to get help with service charges, such as bills for repairs and maintenance to your home.

Grants for your home

You may be able to get financial help if you need to repair, improve or adapt your home.