Wednesday, 09 December 2015 09:08

New bill to bring about changes to the Local Property Tax

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Proposed new legislation currently at Committee stage in the Houses of the Oireachtas will bring about changes to the Local Property Tax (LPT). The new legislation, the Finance (Local Property Tax) (Amendment) (No. 2) Bill 2015, proposes to postpone the next revaluation date for the Local Property Tax from 1st November 2016 to 1st November 2019 and give effect to two particular recommendations in the report on the Review of the Local Property Tax, July 2015 in relation to the implementation of the pyrite exemption from LPT, and reliefs from LPT in respect of properties occupied by persons with disabilities.

Extending the revaluation date will be welcomed by many homeowners as the LPT they currently pay will not change until 2019. The value of property has increased generally throughout the country since the original valuation date of the 1st May 2013. Property prices in Dublin increasing considerably since then and homeowners would have been subject to a large increase in the LPT they pay is the revaluation date was not extended.

It is also proposed that an extension of an exemption from the LPT for the purchase of new houses from builders and property developers is extended for an additional three years from 31 October 2016 to 31 October 2019. This will be welcomed by builders and property developers and is seen as a small incentive for people to buy new homes. This may result in more homes being built but the effect will probably be marginal.

The rules for qualifying for an exemption from LPT for certain properties that have been damaged by pyrite have been relaxed somewhat. The original act, the Finance (Local Property Tax) Act 2012, provided for this exemption in respect of properties that had been certified as having significant pyritic damage in accordance with regulations made by the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government. The exemption is being extended to properties whose owners don’t have the required certification but, nevertheless, have properties that have been proved to have been damaged by pyrite to a significant extent. The exemption is being extended to properties that have been included in the official pyrite remediation scheme without the need for testing, properties that are remediated as a result of a successful insurance claim and properties that are remediated by the builder or property developer who constructed the property.

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