MILLIONS of Brits will get a council tax refund worth £150 to help ease the cost of living crisis.
The extra help was announced last week by the government and will apply to bills from April.
It comes as households face a storm of rising bills putting pressure on people's finances.
April will see energy costs rise again as the price cap limiting bills for 22million homes will increase, adding £693 to outgoings.
The government has promised to tackle the rise with a bill rebate worth £200 to ease the burden, which has been caused by spiralling wholesale gas costs globally.
Local councils have the power to increase council tax by up to 5% from April too, among other bills rising.
Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced the £150 refund on council tax bills to help those struggling – but only for some people.
Here we explain who will be getting the council tax rebate and how…
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Who will get the £150 council tax discount?
Those in council tax bands A to D will get the cash – around 80% of homes – but those in bands E to H are among those missing out.
You can find out which band you're in by using the government's search tool – you just need to enter your postcode.
You could challenge your council tax band if you think it's wrong so you don't miss out on the cash.
But beware a revaluation of your band could put you in a lower band where you pay MORE council tax, so consider the risks – you can read more in our guide.
Those exempt from council tax already won't get the money either and nor will those living in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, as council tax is devolved.
There is also a separate £144million fund to be distributed by local authorities for vulnerable people or those on low incomes who are exempt from the charge or live in higher council tax bands.
Will I get a £150 council tax discount if I'm on benefits?
If you pay council tax and are in band A-D you'll get the discount applied if you're claiming housing benefit.
You'll get it too if the same applies and you're getting pension credit.
Pension Credit is designed to help retirees on a low income by giving them extra money to help with living costs.
In fact if you're claiming any benefits, this shouldn't affect you getting the refund if you're in the right bands.
I already get a council tax discount – do I get this one too?
Some people are eligible for a council tax discount already.
If you live on your own, you're entitled to 25% off your council tax bill.
Pensioners may also find themselves eligible for a council tax reduction, if they are getting some parts of pension credit.
As explained above, those getting pension credit will still get the discount, and the same goes for if they are getting a reduction with it already.
If you are on a low income or receiving benefits, you could eligible for a reduction on your council tax from you local council.
If you're getting a council tax discount for these reasons, you will get the £150 discount too.
You'll get the £150 payment even if the council tax from you local council reduces your council tax bill to below £150, and even to £0.
If you're exempt from paying council tax, for example you're a student, you won't get the discount.
Other exemptions on properties include where the person living there has gone into care and it's now unoccupied, or it's a granny annexe that's part of a main property.
When will I get the £150 council tax discount and how is it paid?
The discount will be made by local authorities.
It will applied automatically as a payment to all households that are eligible – so you won't have to apply.
Payments will start in April and you won't have to give the money back.
The government says it expects the vast majority of people to get payments in April.
Councils will make the payments automatically where they hold bank details, or will contact households to arrange a payment method if they don't.
Other council tax bill help you can get
If you're not already getting a council tax discount it's worth checking if you're eligible.
Single people are entitled to 25% off their bill, while an adult living with a student can get 50% off.
If you are on a low income or receiving benefits, you could eligible for a reduction on your council tax.
The requirements to get help will vary depending on where you live, so the best first step is to check with your local council.
You can apply for a reduction through the Government website.
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