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Low Incomes: Council Tax

Volume 470: debated on Tuesday 8 January 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many households in relative poverty were paying full council tax in the latest year for which information is available; and if he will make a statement. (172095)

The number of households in relative poverty paying full council tax is 2.7 million (before housing costs) and 3.0 million (after housing costs).


1. The information shown is for Great Britain in 2005-06.

2. The income measures used to derive the estimates shown employ the same methodology as the DWP publication 'Households Below Average Income' series, which uses disposable household income, equivalised for household size and composition, as an income measure as a proxy for standard of living.

3. The figures are based on OECD equalisation factors.

4. The preferred measure of low income is by using a threshold of 60 per cent. of the contemporary median income. This is an internationally recognised measure.

5. Figures have been presented on both a before housing cost and after housing cost basis. For before housing cost, housing costs (such as rent, water rates, mortgage interest payments, structural insurance payments and ground rent and service charges) are not deducted from income, while for after housing cost they are. This means that after housing cost incomes will generally be lower than before housing cost.

6. The numbers are in millions rounded to the nearest 100,000.

Source: Family Resources Survey, 2005-06