Property tax: is your house exempt?
Big reduction in waivers compared to last year’s household charge
Stephen Collins, Political Editor
The number of households qualifying for a property tax waiver because they are in ghost estates is far lower than had been expected.
While 43,000 houses were exempt from last year’s household charge on the basis that they were in unfinished estates, just 5,100 will be exempt from the local property tax.
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Minister for the Environment Phil Hogan, who signed off on the new list yesterday, said it reflected the significant progress made by local authorities in reducing the number of problem estates.
Householders can check if their house is exempt on the Department of Environment website.
The household charge waiver list contained 1,322 developments, and approximately 43,000 households while the waiver from payment of the property tax will apply to 421 developments, or approximately 5,100 households.
“It is right and proper that households in unfinished developments should be exempt from payment of the local property tax,” said Mr Hogan.
He said the decline in the number of properties eligible for a waiver reflected the progress made in tackling unfinished housing developments, as well as the more objective approach to categorisation applied to the 2012 National Housing Development Survey.
“I would urge people not to assume that just because they were eligible for a waiver from the household charge they will be eligible for an exemption from the local property tax. The list has changed substantially reflecting the improvements made by local authorities in resolving problems in unfinished housing developments,” he said.
The Minister added that there was plenty of information available from and people could contact their local authority or check the local authority website for the list of developments to which the exemption applied.
The Department said in a statement that the 2012 survey was conducted by local authorities over the course of summer 2012 on the basis of an agreed nationally consistent set of criteria, mapping and survey methodology.
It added that the Department had worked in conjunction with the Housing Agency, co-ordinated the carrying out of the survey to ensure that local authority returns were in accordance with this methodology.
The Department wrote to all local authorities in February to inform them that the 2012 survey would form the basis for the list to which the exemption would apply, and asked them to either confirm or update this list.
Using the returns provided by all local authorities, a list of developments was then prepared and submitted for the purposes of being prescribed under regulations for the exemption.
The survey revealed that 1,203 developments which had previously been included in the 2011 Survey could be removed as they were either substantially complete or development had never commenced, and many substantially complete developments could progress to being taken in charge by local authorities.
The locations and boundaries of developments to which the exemption applies can also be accessed throughwww.revenue.ie and the websites of the relevant local authorities from today.