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Harare City Council Attaches 50 Houses Over Unpaid Rates
Blog - Guest Articles
Harare City Council Attaches 50 Houses Over Unpaid Rates

In a recent move to recover substantial debts, the Harare City Council has taken the drastic step of attaching 50 houses belonging to ratepayers who have failed to settle their bills. This action underscores the city's commitment to ensuring compliance with municipal obligations and maintaining essential services for all residents.

Understanding the context

The Harare City Council has been grappling with significant financial challenges due to widespread non-payment of rates. As of the latest reports, the council is owed an astounding ZiG 600 million (previously ZWL 15 trillion). To put this into perspective, this amount represents a critical shortfall in the city's budget, which impacts the delivery of vital services such as water, waste management, and road maintenance.

The Importance of Paying Rates

Paying rates is not just a legal obligation; it's a civic duty that ensures the well-being and functionality of our communities. When residents pay their rates on time, the council can effectively manage and improve the infrastructure and services that we all rely on daily. Failure to pay rates leads to a domino effect where essential services deteriorate, affecting everyone in the community.


The recent action of attaching properties is a wake-up call to all ratepayers about the serious consequences of neglecting these responsibilities. It highlights the importance of timely payments and the need for better communication and cooperation between the council and residents.

The Impact on Residents

The attachment of 50 houses is a severe measure that has understandably caused distress among affected families. However, it is crucial to recognise the council's position and the necessity of such actions to recover debts. The council has a legal mandate to collect rates and ensure the financial stability needed to serve the city effectively.


Residents facing difficulties in paying their rates are encouraged to approach the council to discuss payment plans or seek assistance. Open communication can often lead to more manageable solutions and prevent such drastic measures from being taken.

Moving Forward: A Call for Responsibility and Cooperation

The situation presents an opportunity for both the Harare City Council and residents to reflect on their roles and responsibilities. For the council, it is a reminder to explore more proactive and compassionate approaches to debt recovery, such as offering more flexible payment plans and increasing awareness about the importance of rate payments.


For residents, this is a call to action to ensure their rates are paid on time. It's a reminder that the quality of municipal services is directly linked to the financial contributions of the community. By fulfilling this obligation, residents contribute to the betterment of their neighbourhoods and the overall functionality of the city.

Practical Steps for Residents

  1. Stay Informed - Regularly check your rate statements and be aware of due dates.
  2. Budget Accordingly - Allocate funds for your rates to avoid last-minute scrambles and potential penalties.
  3. Seek Assistance - If you're facing financial difficulties, reach out to the council early to discuss possible payment arrangements.
  4. Stay Engaged - Attend community meetings or forums to stay updated on council decisions and policies.