Northerners charged more for council tax than southerners - see list showing gap

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Northern homes are hit with big council tax bills (Image: Getty Images/iStockphoto)
Northern homes are hit with big council tax bills (Image: Getty Images/iStockphoto)

Northern homeowners are being hit with bloated council tax bills - despite living in homes that cost just a third of the price in London.

A probe by The Times claimed bills are more than 20 per cent higher in the north of England than in London.

It has sparked fears the north was not getting a fair deal from the Tory government.

The average band D bill in London this year is £1,696, compared with £2,060 in the north of England, research claimed.

The average house price in the capital is £553,000, against £192,000 in the north.

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Eight of the ten cheapest council tax rates in England are in London or the southeast, and none are in the north.

The borough of Westminster in central London has the cheapest band D rate, at only £866 per year.

The most expensive is in Rutland in the East Midlands, at £2,300 a year.

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Northerners charged more for council tax than southerners - see list showing gapThere are fears the north was not getting a fair deal from the government (Getty Images)

This means that the owner of a £28million Belgravia townhouse with its own gym, swimming pool, cinema and lift, would pay less council tax than the owner of a £240,000 three-bedroom terrace in Oakham, a small town 25 miles from Leicester.

The Belgravia property owner would pay £1,728 council tax a year for the band H home, and the owner of the Oakham terrace home would pay £1,792 for the band B property.

One explanation for the differences is that many cities in the Midlands and northern England have greater proportions of smaller A and B homes, making it harder for their councils to keep the lower-rated bands affordable.

Rutland council said that it blamed the way local government funding worked.

Northerners charged more for council tax than southerners - see list showing gapHouses in the south have lower council tax (Getty Images)

A spokesman told The Times: "We do not believe that government funding is shared fairly.

"Currently 58.9 per cent of local authorities' spending power comes from council tax.

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"In Rutland this figure is 80 per cent, placing a greater burden on local residents.

"If Rutland got average funding we would have an extra £5 million for local services, making us less reliant on council tax."

Taxpayers in England may also ask how homeowners in Scotland get a better deal, paying a third less on average.

Band D homes in England pay an average of £1,994 a year but band D homes in Scotland pay only £1,300.

People who live in the north east of England pay more than any other region on average, at £2,094, and nearly 60 per cent more than in Scotland.

Northerners charged more for council tax than southerners - see list showing gapThe data has revealed the divide (Tim Graham/Getty Images)

This means that a band D homeowner in Berwick upon Tweed will pay £2,130 a year in council tax while someone who owns a similar property on the Scottish side of the border will pay £400 a year less.

Scottish residents also have free university tuition, free prescriptions, free bus travel for under-22s and free personal care for all who need it.

The data, which was supplied by Money.co.uk, showed that on average across the country council tax bills have increased by 31 per cent during the past six years, compared with 19 per cent for the rate of inflation.

Dan Warburton

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