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Council Tax - Is it too high?

Discussion in 'Speaker's Corner' started by Psycho Sonny, Aug 16, 2018.

  1. Psycho Sonny

    Caporegime

    Joined: Jun 21, 2006

    Posts: 28,632

    Just got back from Vancouver (Canada) and their property taxes are buttons compared to us. Like for a home which costs £800k in Richmond is comparable to a home which costs £200K here in the UK in terms of council tax.

    Their houses are also massive. However they are extremely expensive. Property prices over there are insane, well in downtown Vancouver and Richmond area. Like in high point homes are $5-$12 million a piece. Similar sized home here would be like £800,000.

    A lot of rich chinese flooding the area. I mean 90% of people in Vancouver and Richmond are Chinese. Saw at least 20 lambos, ferraris, aston martins, etc. Their taxes are a low lower too and their minimum wage is higher than the UK. VAT is like 12% there. Minimum wage is like £10 per hour and most places have a minimum tip of like 18-20% added onto the bill if you have a party of like 5 or more.
     
  2. McGray

    Mobster

    Joined: Dec 8, 2008

    Posts: 4,310

    Who pays £200k for council tax?
     
  3. Mercenary Keyboard Warrior

    Sgarrista

    Joined: Aug 4, 2007

    Posts: 7,535

    Location: Wilds of suffolk

    Aye, OP maybe you can reword it a bit, i think I get what you are trying to say but its a bit confused
     
  4. StriderX

    Capodecina

    Joined: Mar 18, 2008

    Posts: 16,445

    I'd love to say different economy setup and policies, but i'm sure Canada isn't entirely too far behind the UK in backwards fiscal.
     
  5. Mercenary Keyboard Warrior

    Sgarrista

    Joined: Aug 4, 2007

    Posts: 7,535

    Location: Wilds of suffolk

    Ignoring the council tax element for now and focussing on house prices

    If I drove 20 miles or so down the road into the edge of Cambridge my house would probably go up in value 5x, you know "location location location" in Chelsea probably 25x
    Or even 10 miles to Newmarket it would probably double the value
     
  6. mid_gen

    Sgarrista

    Joined: Dec 20, 2004

    Posts: 8,067

    Location: Düsseldorf

    It's pretty irrelevant in the grand scheme of things. I mean, I pay zero property tax here.

    There is a flat ~7% stamp duty, and 25% CGT if you sell a property within 10 years. You know, sensible policies that help provide a stable and affordable supply of homes for people.
     
  7. Psycho Sonny

    Caporegime

    Joined: Jun 21, 2006

    Posts: 28,632

    i mean tha council tax you pay here in the UK on a £200K house is comparable to the council tax you pay in canada on a £800K house.

    as in the £4K a year we pay here is the same over there for a much more expensive property. i believe they pay around $6K a year on a 5 bedroom 3 storey detached home in richmond worth £800k

    high point isn't in downtown though. also how many houses in those areas are $12 million a piece? the minimum price in high point is like $5 million.
     
  8. Psycho Sonny

    Caporegime

    Joined: Jun 21, 2006

    Posts: 28,632

    how is it irrelevant?

    if i had to pay zero property tax. i could afford a home in one of the top affluent areas. i spoke to a guy at work who told me his first ever mortgage was like £260 a month. i told him i pay that in council tax per month and they agreed that is how it is these days.
     
  9. The_Abyss

    Capodecina

    Joined: May 15, 2007

    Posts: 10,310

    Location: Ipswich / Bodham

    Pointless thread, looking at two highly different taxation systems and then drawing out an element of each that is related to housing and asking if it is too high. Comparing apples with oranges etc.

    If you paid zero property tax in one country then doubtless you'll be making up for it with taxation elsewhere.
     
  10. Psycho Sonny

    Caporegime

    Joined: Jun 21, 2006

    Posts: 28,632

    i just think their councils must be on much smaller budgets. as in they only have street lighting where people tend to walk on pavements and on highways. we tend to have them everywhere. they don't give staff as many benefits as we do in terms of holidays, sick pay. their benefit system apparently you build an allowance depending how long you worked for and the max is 18 months. after 18 months you get nothing. so if you have been out of work for 18 months unemployed you better find a job quick.

    we pay far too much here on everything. there a 5kg crate of blueberries is $2. here £2 gets you 150g. plus their minimum wage is higher.

    this country seems to be going down the pan in comparison.
     
  11. D.P.

    Caporegime

    Joined: Oct 18, 2002

    Posts: 29,350

    I don't know Canadian taxes but in the US you don't have a council tax but a property tax, typically around 1% but varies from 0.7 to 1.5%. The more expensive areas have higher taxes typically, so that 800K house in Vancouver might have a tax of around 10K a year. Also useful to note it is the property owner that pays the taxes, if you rent then you live without council or property taxes, as it should be.
    Also cars, boats expensive items are added to the property and may attract different tax rates. E.g. a car might be taxed at 3%.


    When all is said and done, US taxes are not any lower than UK until you start getting into the very high tax bands, 250K a year. the top marginal tax rates are lower but the tax-free allowances a lower, and that is only on the federal, you then have to add the state taxes and local taxes etc.

    The fact is the UK actually has abnormally low taxes, 34% of GDP. Germany is at 44%, Scandinavia at 50-55%. The UK pays less average tax than Greece (39%) for example. This way the Tories get away with under funding public services and making their rich friends richer.
     
  12. Uther

    Sgarrista

    Joined: Jun 16, 2005

    Posts: 8,860

    Yep, more tax needed here, to pay for services. Its a definite vote loser though.
     
  13. VincentHanna

    Capodecina

    Joined: Jul 30, 2013

    Posts: 16,363

    4K Council tax on a 200K house? Where?

    I pay 2K and though my house is rented it's considered Band D.
     
  14. mid_gen

    Sgarrista

    Joined: Dec 20, 2004

    Posts: 8,067

    Location: Düsseldorf

    Because, as later replies have pointed out, a single point of taxation is meaningless. I don't pay council or property tax here, but I pay more income tax (and other stuff like a Solidarity Tax to fund investment in East Germany still!)

    Total tax take is a fair bit higher here than in the UK, but in return I get vastly better public services, social security, and employment rights. It's a much nicer place to live.
     
  15. One More Solo

    Capodecina

    Joined: Dec 29, 2004

    Posts: 15,279

    Location: Manchester

    How on earth is this a Speaker's Corner thread, it's an affront to economics and common sense...
     
  16. Mercenary Keyboard Warrior

    Sgarrista

    Joined: Aug 4, 2007

    Posts: 7,535

    Location: Wilds of suffolk

    Council tax is a badly flawed system, problem is even a small step to a more logical one (poll tax) was met with riots

    Council tax is supposed to pay for local services. A significant proportion of those services are welfare type things, OAP care etc

    Of the other services, typically, lower income areas need them more, so hence the council struggle to not spend so much.
    Where you get very affluent areas the people tend to be relatively low users of local services so they could in theory pay less.

    Its one of the problems with local taxation vs national taxation. The problem with national taxation to pay for local services is that politics will come into play, if your a Tory : why take money off rich people to provide local services to poor people when the poor people wont vote for you, and you will just **** of the rich people.

    The UK is expensive, it always has been in relative terms to most of the world. The biggest driver for this is the cost of housing, it affects pretty much everything because just about everything you touch has to be handled by someone else, as that person needs to be able to live they also need a decent wage. House price inflation has hurt us badly.
     
  17. SPG

    Mobster

    Joined: Jul 28, 2010

    Posts: 4,979

    So you mean Tory Policy then.

    NewLabour (Left wing Tory`s) also did nothing to address this situation as they wanted the rich mans vote.

    As for poll tax rightly so their was riots about it.

    Tory ideology designing a flawed system that only favored Tory voters. It might be logically the way to do things, but not the way the Tory wanted to implement it.
     
  18. Mercenary Keyboard Warrior

    Sgarrista

    Joined: Aug 4, 2007

    Posts: 7,535

    Location: Wilds of suffolk

    Nah sorry just wrong

    When the poll tax was in I lived at my parents, well the start anyway so I suddenly had to pay it. So the tax take went up for the house, yet my parents paid less as a couple.
    Why should I have contributed noting to local services compared to my mate who had just moved into a tiny flat.
    Its practically impossible to argue that everyone locally should not contribute to the services.
    If your not linking that to consumption, then it should be shared equally.

    We already have enough other taxes that are directly based on income.

    Council tax directly penalises those who can have low income but maybe inherited a decent house compared to those happy to have 3 generations in a 3 bed semi, ie it has no relation in ability to pay

    By far the best system is to collect all nationally and divide whats needed back on a fair basis to pay for local services. However that requires fair play whoever is in government and both left and right would equally attempt to play it to their advantage.

    Basically no one likes to be seen to have to pay for someone elses benefit. Practically everyone wants to pay less tax, but have better services, the model of best distribution is always influenced by this. There is not right or wrong, perfect or imperfect system :)
     
  19. Admiral Huddy

    Don

    Joined: Feb 17, 2003

    Posts: 29,019

    Location: Chelmsford & Broadgate

    It's annoying given all the other taxes you pay but you can't grumble about the lack of local provisions and services on one hand, then complain about the cost on the other.

    I do think the system is flawed. My son is 21 and living at home still. He uses the same services as we do and therefore should be responsible and accountable for what he uses. The solution to this goes back to the poll tax which as we know, wasn't that popular but it's smoke and mirrors.. they get you one way or another.
     
  20. SPG

    Mobster

    Joined: Jul 28, 2010

    Posts: 4,979

    Just No,

    The poll tax was dependent on how many lived in the house, the poor ended up paying more due them generally having more under one roof, and the flat rate took no account of how much spare cash you had.

    Again Tory ideology. Not a fair system.

    If you remove the house from the equation and leveled it at everyone pays X amount then you would have leveled the playing field. As usual with Tory good idea implemented for the good of the few and screw everyone else.