Estate agents supplying tax authorities with home info

Posted: 04 Dec 2006 10:24:49 GMT


            Property News - Estate agents supplying tax authorities with home info

Estate agents have been secretly supplying council tax authorities with detailed information on properties they have sold, including pricing and floorplans

Estate agents have been secretly supplying council tax authorities with detailed information on properties they have sold, including pricing and floorplans.

The information has been coordinated through the website Rightmove, run by the UK's four biggest agencies, supplying details on more than 800,000 properties they have sold.

Details are passed to the Valuation Office Agency (VOA), which sets council tax bands, which then uses the data about home improvements to set rates, said Daily Mail.

The VOA recently purchased a £40 million database to help it restructure council tax bands across the country, combining agent's data with aerial and satellite photographs.

"This is a sinister development," said Conservative local government spokesman Eric Pickles. "It is several steps beyond Big Brother.

"We should do our best to limit the amount of personal information the government holds. That's because they are never able to resist the temptation to use it - and in this case they will use it to raise taxes."

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