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The Inverness and Highland addresses that have the highest council tax debt

Figures show that one property has accrued £48,818 of council tax debt.

Collage of Highland Council HQ and a council tax bill.
Highland Council uses council tax to pay for schools, bin collections and roads. Image: DC Thomson Design Team

Homes across the Highlands have racked up a collective £39 million council tax debt as the cost-of-living crisis deepens.

The total is about 30% more than the £30 million being invested in transforming Inverness Castle into a new tourist attraction.

Figures released to the Press and Journal by Highland Council show the properties and areas struggling with bills the most.

One Dingwall home has a debt of £48,818 when water, sewerage and any sheriff officer fees are also included.

The total is the equivalent of 28 years of unpaid council tax and water charges for a band C house at the current 2023/24 rates.

Mock-up of a council tax bill.
Council tax discounts are available in certain situations. Image: PA

The total amount of unpaid council tax debt outstanding, not including water charges and any sheriff officer fees, to Highland Council since 1993 is £39,030,974.45.

That is about a third of one year’s income for the council.

The local authority says it can negotiate repayment plans for debts with help and support available to those with financial problems.

The 5 Highland properties with the most council tax debt

Highland Council has provided partial postcodes of the homes with the most council tax debt to preserve the anonymity of the household.

The property with the most debt, totalling £48,818, is in the IV15 9** area, which covers Dingwall.

The top five outstanding bills are:

  1. IV15 9** (Dingwall) – £48,818
  2. KW8 6** (Helmsdale) – £35,077
  3. IV8 8** (Munlochy) – £34,028
  4. PH21 1** (Kingussie) – £30,740
  5. PH33 6** (Fort William) – £29,836

The top 20 Highland postcodes that collectively owe most council tax

Highland Council has also released a list of partial postcodes where the most council tax is collectively owed:

  • IV3 8S* (Kinmylies area of Inverness) – £1,129,465
  • IV17 0R* (Kirkside and Coulpark area in Alness) – £1,128,299
  • IV3 8A* (Thornbush Road and nearby streets in Inverness) – £869,954
  • PH33 6H* (Alma Road area in Fort William) – £830,252
Aerial view of River Ness in Inverness.
Inverness postcodes have some of the largest number of homes in the Highlands. Image: Jeff Holmes JSHPIX/Shutterstock
  • IV3 8E* (Glendoe Terrace and Benula Road area in Inverness) – £683,901
  • IV3 8D* (Anderson Street, India Street and Madra Street area in Inverness) – £603,345
  • IV2 4J* (Evan Barron Road, Balloan Road and Mackay Road area in Inverness) – £580,140
  • KW1 5H* (Huddart Street and Harbour Terrace area of Wick) – £560,924
  • IV2 4P* (Morvich Way area of Inverness) – £556,384
  • IV2 4H* (Cauldeen Road and Culduthel Road area of Inverness) – £550,034
  • IV17 0Y* (Rural area north of Alness) – £517,573
  • IV3 5R* (Caledonian Road area of Inverness) – £508,942
  • IV3 5S* (Bishops Road area of Inverness) – £508,124
  • IV2 3U* (Mackintosh Road and King Duncans Road area of Inverness) – £498,376
Scenic view across Dingwall during snow day.
A Dingwall property has the highest individual council tax debt. Image: Sandy McCook/DC Thomson
  • IV3 8H* (Abban Street and Gilbert Street area of Inverness) – £498,275
  • IV6 7T* (Highfield Circle and Corry Road area in Muir of Ord) – £487,517
  • IV3 8B* (Kessock Avenue and Grant Street area of Inverness) – £486,788
  • IV3 8Q* (Creag Dhubh Terrace area of Inverness) – £482,008
  • KW1 5B* (Kinnaird Street area of Wick) – £475,621
  • IV7 8B* (Station Road area in Conon Bridge) – £466,896

What to do if you can’t pay your council tax

Highland Council says it provides support to those who are struggling to pay their council tax and other household bills.

The local authority advises people to contact them to discuss their situation, which can include making repayment arrangements.

Citizens Advice Bureau sign above the door.
Support is available for those struggling with their finances. Image: Paul Reid

If you are more than seven days late paying a monthly instalment then the full remaining council tax balance for the year is then due within a further 14 days.

After a further three reminder notices for the further three months, Highland Council passes the debt to the courts to enforce payment.

How to get help and advice about debt

Highland Council’s welfare support team can be contacted by calling 0800 090 1004 or by e-mailing

The Citizens Advice Bureau has branches across the Highlands, including in Inverness, Alness, Nairn and Thurso. Help is also available by calling 0800 028 1456.