The “AT” (Tax Authority) has revealed plans to review the Location Coefficient (“CL”) of immovable properties by the end of August. The new localisation factor will be approved by the end of the year, coming into effect in January 2020. Finanças targets updates to the Ratable Value of real estate (“VPT”) at 85% of average property prices in each location.
There are almost 4 million demands for Municipal Tax on Real Estate (“IMI”) being issued this year. Nearly one million property rates fall below €100. This annual tax is levied based on the rateable value of real estate. In the case of urban property, the rate is set by local authorities in a range between 0,3% to 0,45%. It is also up to the municipalities whether or not to grant a tax discount to families with dependents: €20 when there is one dependent, €40 when there are two and €70 when there are three or more dependents.
The government has reviewed the criteria for properties being considered “vacant”, which may imply an increase in IMI (Municipal Property Tax) by three to six-fold. The increase will occur when an abode is located in a “pressure zone” and has remained empty for more than two years. Lack of consumption of utilities such as water and electricity will be the prime indicators. Exempt from the concept of “vacant” are dwellings integrated in tourist developments or registered as Local Lodging as well as second homes not located in the same municipality where the owner is resident.
There are new deadlines for the payment of the Municipal Property Tax (“IMI”). Instead of running between April and October as before, tax settlement will take place between May and November in 2019. “IMI” is paid in one go or in several instalments, depending on whether taxation is less or greater than €100. May is the month for single assessments when the tax due is under €100; or for the first instalment, in cases where the amount owed is greater. Second payments are in August when “IMI” exceeds €500. Finally, November is for final payments when taxation falls between €100 – €500 or third instalments if the levy is greater than €500.
More than 90% of the taxpayers requesting a reassessment of their property based on an outdated “VPT” (Tax Asset Value) achieved a reduction in the “IMI” due (Municipal Property Tax). Properties were overvalued by more than €447 million. Updating the VPT (on which the tax rate applies) does not happen automatically. Legislation permits owners to call for a reappraisal three years after the previous one. This request – which is free of charge – can be made directly at the local tax office or via the Finanças Portal.
In 2019, the value per square metre for real estate rose from €603 to €615 per m², an amount that had not changed since 2010. This criterion is key in determining a property’s Rateable Value (“VPT”) and consequently the value of “IMI”. The amount due is fixed by factors such as location, condition, quality, size and age of the property. These coefficients are updated every three years at which time a revaluation of the property can be requested. The final “IMI” due is determined by the tax rate established by each Municipality between 0.3% to 0.45% for urban buildings and 0.8% for rustic land.
Established in 2017, “AIMI” is a supplementary property tax assessed on higher valued properties, based on the sum of all taxable “urban” real estate (“VPT”). This incremental levy is sometimes euphemistically referred to as a Portuguese Wealth Tax. Urban properties classified as “commercial, industrial or service” and “other” are exempt.
In 2019, AIMI rates are as follows:
Companies (non-residential use by owners/directors; otherwise same as Individuals):
0.4% for total of rateable urban “VPT”s;
Individuals (for couples, double exempt value):
0.7% When the total “VPT” value of all properties is between €600,000 and €1,000,000;
1% For “VPT” real estate totals between €1,000,000 and €2,000,000;
1.5% For “VPT” total exceeding two million euros (new in 2019).
Assessment of the Additional to IMI is calculated in June referring to real estate holdings on 01 January of each year. Payment is due in September.
As a relatively new tax, it is not surprising that many have been caught unaware of their liability to pay AIMI and, more importantly, how they can avoid the disturbing consequences. The additional assessment to IMI (Adicional Imposto Municipal Imobiliário) is sending shock waves to individuals and company owners who unwittingly find themselves under the weight of this added fiscal obligation. Continue reading
Some home buyers are eligible for a three-year exemption on the municipal tax on real estate (“IMI”), provided that the dwelling corresponds to their permanent residence. When the property is bought by more than one person (a couple, for example), the dispensation is only maintained when there is no change in the fiscal address over the period. Otherwise, the Tax Authority (“AT”) will consider that the necessary conditions to benefit from the tax break are no longer being met and the waiver will be revoked.