A lot of people moan about paying Council Tax….and I was one of them. I pay £85 a month, and I always said, what am I getting for this money???
I know, I was getting rubbish removal, police services, fire services, plus funding the Council itself. But yet, I still moaned.
Then there was the time I needed the service.
Recently there was a fire in my block of flats, a serious fire!
My neighbour’s flat was on fire. I heard the smoke detector, then I heard and felt an explosion, the explosion rocked the building! I went outside and saw not just smoke billowing out the one window, but flames shooting out!
I did not know if my neighbour was inside or not, and I could not get close due to the intense heat, and the flames.
I dial 999, explain what is happening, they ask if someone is inside, I state I do not know, but from the look of things if the fire brigade is not here in 5 minutes, the entire block of flats, will go up. My neighbour’s flat was fully engulfed in flames.
I was instructed not to enter the flat, and the fire brigade would be there soon, they were on their way.
Sure enough, within 5 minutes, 3 fire trucks were there, followed by an ambulance, and the police.
I had been standing on the street to direct the firemen when they arrived, and I showed them which flat, which really was not necessary, as due to the smoke and flames, they would easily find it.
One fireman kicked in the door, after about 4 major kicks, he was not messing about! Then 3 firemen in O2 gear went in. I thought they would bring out my neighbour as a charred piece of meat, but thankfully…he was not home.
My point of relating and sharing this tale of what happened, is that the fire brigade did everything, quickly, and with no concern about their own safety! They thought someone was inside, and they were there to save them, and get them out.
They also cleaned up a bit afterwards, and used huge fans to blow the smoke out.
When my neighbour arrived home later, the fire brigade were still there, my neighbour had been out shopping. Turns out he left a window open, and someone set his flat on fire!
And as with many arsonists, they were nearby to watch their work, and the fire brigade had a sixth sense about this, and interviewed me and a few others, and the police arrested this arsonist.
Amazing, scary, and a true tale.
Council Tax Priority Bill and Collecting It
Needless to say after that experience, I see paying Council Tax in a whole new light!
Council Tax is a priority bill each month, and there are ways to get discounts or concessions on it, and there are also harsh ways it can be collected.
If you are on benefits, such as Universal Credit, you can get a concession.
If you are living alone, you can get a sole occupancy discount of 25%.
Other discounts depending on your area are:
- If you are a carer
- Over a certain age or on a pension
- Severely mentally impaired
- An apprentice
- Empty homes
There are other discounts, but again, it depends on the local Council.
It is always best to not let it reach the point that Bailiffs are used.
So as you can see/read, Council Tax is an important and priority bill each month, and if you witnessed and experienced what I did, you would say it is value for money. All it takes is one incident, and you cannot put a price tag on that one incident.