Tax reliefs for refurbishment of historic buildings

Reliefs will be available to restore Dublin’s historic core

The Irish Georgian Society, Dublin Civic Trust and several other heritage organisations had called for the extension of the Living City Initiative  to the capital soon after it was announced last year.

The Irish Georgian Society, Dublin Civic Trust and several other heritage organisations had called for the extension of the Living City Initiative to the capital soon after it was announced last year.

Tue, Oct 15, 2013, 17:11

Tax incentives for the regeneration of Dublin’s historic buildings are to be introduced, Minister for Finance Michael Noonan has said.

Mr Noonan announced the extension of the Living City Initiative, which was piloted in Limerick and Waterford through Budget 2013, to Dublin as well as Cork, Galway and Kilkenny. The extension is subject to EU approval.

The tax reliefs for the restoration of residential and retail buildings previously applied only to Georgian housing stock but can now be used to bring pre-1915 buildings up to a habitable standard.

The incentives are targeted at owner-occupiers rather than property developers. The initiative allows residents to claim tax relief for refurbishment at a rate of 10 per cent per year for 10 years against their income, but only for the years the house is their principal private residence. If the property is sold within the 10-year period, entitlement to the relief stops and the new owner will not be able to claim it.

“The initiative should assist the regeneration of retail and commercial districts and encourage families to live in the historic buildings in our city centres,” Mr Noonan said.

The Irish Georgian Society, Dublin Civic Trust and several other heritage organisations had called for the extension of the scheme to the capital soon after it was announced last year.

The abolition in 2011 of the National Conservation Grant had been followed in a significant deterioration in the condition of Dublin’s historic buildings.

The grant funded up to 50 per cent of the cost of repairs and conservation measures for buildings on the Record of Protected Structures. Owners of buildings listed on the record could apply for funding of up to €25,000 towards the costs of work to restore and repair buildings using traditional materials and proper conservation practices.

In 2010 €3.74 million was provided for the scheme. In 2011 it was replaced by the Structures at Risk Fund with a total national allocation of just €650,000. In 2013 just €28,000 was allocated in Dublin city.

Landlord advocacy group the Irish Property Owners Association expressed disappointment the scheme was not extended to “pre-63” properties to bring the “much-needed flat” back into the rental sector.