Council Tax to rise for top-end homes

Council tax rates are set to increase in 2017 for those in the top council tax bands.

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First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has announced that councils across Scotland will be able to raise the council tax levy by up to 3% from April 2017, following a nine-year cap on rates.

While those living in bands A to D will be unaffected by the change, those in E to H bands will see their council tax rates increase by £105, and up to £517, a year.

The annual average increases in council tax as a result of these band adjustments will be £105 for band E, £207 for band F, £335 for band G and £517 for band H.

A spokeswoman for ESPC said: "These Council Tax changes seem to be relatively low-level and we don't anticipate it having a material impact on the property market, however it provides another piece of uncertainty for home-owners and potential buyers. Already this year we are seeing a new 3% tax on second homes, there is the Scottish Parliament election in May, European elections in June, and the possibility of rent control being introduced.

"With many homes in Edinburgh valued at over £300,000, the increase in council tax from bands E to H is likely to have an effect on a larger proportion of homeowners in Edinburgh compared to the average across the whole of Scotland, which is stated by the Scottish Government to be 25%. Those with homes in the top council tax bands are therefore not only paying an increase in Land and Buildings Transaction Tax now, but potentially more in council tax too. However there is some good news in that pensioners will be exempt from these increases in Council Tax which, again according the Government accounts, for a third of those affected across the country."

You can find more information on the Scottish Government's siteBut if you have any queries you can find great advice on espc.com/useful-info