Designing Council Tax Support schemes during a cost of living crisis

On-demand webinar

Council Tax Support schemes are one of the most powerful ways that councils can address poverty and debt. The best schemes can provide meaningful support to vulnerable residents.

This webinar discussed the design of Council Tax support schemes in the context of the cost of living crisis, and why now is the time to redesign your scheme. We explored how to maintain scheme generosity for residents struggling with increased living costs whilst dealing with declining scheme budgets and pressures to make savings.

Our guest speaker, Corin Hammersley from the Royal Borough of Greenwich, shared how Greenwich has used modelling to design a new scheme with a simple but novel approach to increasing support for employed households, whilst remaining cost neutral.

National trends in CTS scheme design show that councils are making changes to enable greater automation and cut administrative costs. This minimises the need to make savings through reducing scheme generosity, which can lead to increased financial pressure for residents and additional costs of collection and further support.

There are other important factors to consider that fall outside the direct cost and impact of support.

We gave a comprehensive overview of the merits of different scheme options and outline scheme changes to maximise the automation of applications using Universal Credit data.

We also showed how modelling provides vital insights into the cost and impact on residents of new schemes, as well as the consequences of doing nothing.

Listen back to learn about
  • The importance of council tax support schemes in a cost of living crisis
  • The evolution of the Royal Borough of Greenwich’s CTR scheme, and what they considered when designing their latest scheme
  • The latest national trends in CTR scheme designs and drivers for change
  • How to (re-)design your own CTR scheme to reduce costs, stay generous and interact with Universal Credit
  • The features, pros and cons of 4 types of schemes

View the webinar

Zoe Charlesworth
There's a lot of work in CTR schemes around vulnerable people and people with disabilities. The group having the most difficulty to make ends meet is single renters.
Zoe Charlesworth,Associate Policy and Research Lead, Policy in Practice
RB Greenwich logo
If you want to make changes to your scheme for 2024 you need to start now. You need a year to go through the modelling, analyse the results and then to go through the consultation process.
Corin Hammersley,Advice and Policy Manager Manager, Royal Borough of Greenwich
Alex Clegg
Something that's often overlooked but is important to consider is the impact on residents if councils choose not to do CTR modelling.
Alex Clegg,Senior Policy and Data Analyst, Policy in Practice
Skip to content