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Homeowners warned over council tax band scam

Given the steady increase in council tax rates in recent years, homeowners across the country have had more reason than ever before to query their council tax bands.

A call therefore to say that you have been incorrectly placed in the wrong band and can claim a rebate would seem like a timely one.

Appearances can be deceiving though as they say, and this is certainly been the case for residents in Bolton who have been getting bombarded with unsolicited calls from people making statements to this effect.

Bolton Council’s Trading Standards have been inundated with reports that people have been receiving cold calls from a new firm claiming that they are in the wrong council tax band. They then pledge to get them into a lower band and also advise that they are eligible for a refund.

Complaints have been made about the aggressive nature of the London-based firm, who are going as far as trying to arrange house visits, while conveniently neglecting to mention that they charge a fee.

Council officers have advised homeowners not to deal with cold call traders and have stressed that they can check they are in the right council tax band for free.

A spokesman said: “No private company can guarantee you will be put into a lower council tax band and they should not make claims that you will definitely be entitled to a rebate.

“The vast majority of council tax bandings are correct and there are only certain circumstances that allow a change of band.

“We are also concerned that some residents appear to have been misled into thinking this company is working on behalf of the council or that they are connected to a government agency.

“I would stress that this company has no connection whatsoever with the government, the council or any other official body.”

Understanding your council tax and keeping up with payments can be a stressful experience, but bogus firms like the one reported here are merely preying on the insecurities of homeowners.

If you need help with your council tax or simply want to talk to someone you can trust, then the experts at Council Tax Advisors (CTA) are on hand. They offer free, practical advice on all matters relating to council tax and have helped over 10,000 people to date.

The message is simple: don’t be taken in by unsolicited calls from people making bold and ultimately false promises about your council tax. Contact CTA for all the advice you need.

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