Most people believe that the local property tax is unfair and should be abolished
Most people want the property tax to be abolished, with many homeowners believing that the tax is unfair.
Polling results point to widespread confusion about who is liable for tax.
The results of the Taxback.com Taxpayer Sentiment Survey come as the deadline for those paying local property taxes by check, debit card, credit card or cash is just days away.
Local Property Tax (LPT) is due for these individuals by next Thursday. If you pay by direct debit, the tax for this year will be deducted from January 15th.
Those who pay the tax in a lump sum from their bank accounts via what is known as an annual direct debit order will have their accounts debited from March 21.
A Taxback.com poll of 1,200 taxpayers found that eight in ten people want the LPT to be abolished.
Almost half of those surveyed consider the tax to be unfair because it does not take household income into account. The amount of tax levied is based on home valuation bands.
Others told the assessors they didn’t think the LPT tax revenues were well spent. The money goes to local authorities to fund local services.
Only one in five would vote to keep the LPT in its current form.
And the poll revealed widespread public confusion about who is responsible for the tax.
The survey found that four in 10 people got it wrong when asked who has to pay the tax.
Almost one in five people mistakenly believe that LPT does not have to be paid if a property is more than five years old.
More than one in ten people mistakenly believe that commercial property owners should pay the tax.
And 5pc mistakenly believe tenants are liable for the LPT.
According to Taxback.com, residential property owners or co-owners are liable for the LPT regardless of when the property was built.
However, non-residential properties that are unoccupied are not liable and there are some properties that are exempt from the LPT.
Marian Ryan, excise tax manager at Taxback.com said: “Despite the high LPT compliance rate, with 95 per cent of taxpayers paying it, most people want the property tax to be abolished.
“The LPT was introduced in 2013 at the end of the austerity years. Those years are long gone, so surely the LPT should go too.”
She said many people find the tax inherently unfair.
“It doesn’t take into account their household income or their ability to pay the tax,” she said.
Ms Ryan said pensioners whose only source of income is the state pension will still have to pay that tax, as will all low-income earners who own property.
“This is grossly unfair given the high price that so many of these people likely paid to buy a home and the fact that many of them have also paid high income taxes their entire lives.”
The tax expert said some of today’s homeowners also paid hefty stamp taxes when they first bought their home, especially if they bought homes in the early 2000s.
She claimed this meant they were effectively taxed twice on the property.
“With the huge cost of housing in this country and the pressure so many households are under due to the cost of living crisis, it is certainly time for the government to consider eliminating the LPT or making the LPT system fairer,” said Ms Ryan .
She said the widespread confusion over who is liable for the tax needs to be addressed.
https://www.independent.ie/business/personal-finance/tax/most-people-believe-local-property-tax-is-unfair-and-should-be-scrapped-42265960.html Most people believe that the local property tax is unfair and should be abolished