Across the UK, millions of households pay council tax every year.

The annual fee is set by local councils and is used to help support local services including rubbish collection, police, transport,  and libraries.

In the UK, you pay council tax for ten monthly instalments with two months of the year not needing to pay the fee.

However, not everyone pays the same amount of council tax with it often varying on personal circumstances, valuation of your property and how much tax is needed to fund local services.

Do pensioners have to pay council tax?

Everyone has to pay council tax unless they are eligible for a reduction, which can often include pensioners.

If you or your partner have reached the State Pension age you should be able to claim a Council Tax Reduction (CTR).

  • CTR will apply if either you or your partner already claims: 
  • Universal Credit
  • income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA)
  • income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
  • Income Support.

Only the person who has reached the State Pension age should apply for CTR.

You can apply for CTR via the government website here.

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How much support will I get with my Council Tax?

The amount of support each claimant gets depends on circumstances and where you live in the UK.

This is because each local council is in charge of its own Council Tax Support scheme so the amount across the region varies.

How much Council Tax Support you get depends on some of the following factors:

  • your age
  • your income, including any benefits you receive 
  • your savings
  • who you live with
  • how much Council Tax you pay


You may also be able to claim more money off your Council Tax bill if you fit under the following factors:

  • you live alone
  • you're a carer 
  • you or someone you live with has a severe mental impairment, such as dementia or a learning difficulty
  • there are adaptations in your home that make it suitable for someone with a disability who lives there
  • you have another person living with you who isn't your partner and is on a low income
  • your property is empty – for example, you've gone into hospital or moved into a care home
  • where you're living isn't your main residence
  • there's an issue, such as a flood, which may be covered by a discretionary discount offered by some councils.

You can apply for support via the Government.