FINALLY, after more than two months of hot air, speculation, rumour and debate, amendments to the Immovable Property Tax law for 2013 were passed by a slim majority of MPs at yesterday’s plenary session of the House of Representatives.
Only 15 of the 54 MPs present voted for the bill amendments; 39 abstained.
Under the revised provisions of the Immovable Property Tax Law (No. 24/1980) all owners of property in Cyprus whose 1980 value exceeds €12,500 are liable to pay an annual tax to the Inland Revenue based on the total 1980 value of all immovable property registered in their name on 1st January 2013.
The amendment affects around 52,000 property owners and will result in some €12.7 million less revenue for the state.
The revised law, which was originally introduced in May, is designed to achieve one of the bailout conditions that Cyprus agreed with its international lenders, i.e. to ensure that a further €75 million is collected by the state from property taxation.
The revised Immovable Property Tax rates for 2013 are as follows:
Assessed 1980 Property Value
|€1 to €12,500||nil||€0||€0|
|€12,501 to ?€40,000||0.6%||€240†||€240†|
|€40,001 to €?120,000||0.8%||€640||€880|
|€?120,001 to €?170,000||0.9%||€450||€1,330|
|€170,001 to €?300,000||1.1%||€1,430||€2,760|
|€?300,001 to €?500,000||1.3%||€2,600||€5,360|
|€500,001 to €?800,000||1.5%||€4,500||€9,860|
|€800,001 to €?3,000,000||1.7%||€37,400||€47,260|
|More than ?€3,000,000||1.9%|
†Those owning property whose total 1980 value exceeds €12,500 will pay tax on their total 1980 value.
The changes brought about by the final set of amendments for the current tax year:
- Remove the minimum IPT payment of €75.
- Exempt owners of properties whose total 1980 value is no more than €12,500 from IPT.
- Owners of properties whose 1980 value exceeds €12,500 will pay tax on their total 1980 value and will not benefit from the €12,500 exemption.
To date, Immovable Property Tax notices have been sent to all owners of properties whose 1980 value is €12,500 or more and the state has collected approximately €14.4 million in additional revenue.
How much Immovable Property Tax (IPT) will I pay?
The amount of tax you pay will be calculated by an Inland Revenue officer and will be based on the total 1980 value of all the properties registered in your name as shown on their Title Deeds – or more correctly the ‘Certificate of Registration of Immovable Property’ – in Greek ‘????????????? ???????? ???????? ???????????’.
For example, if a property is registered in a single name and has a 1980 value of €60,000, its owner will be asked to pay:
On the first €40,000 – 0.6% = €240
On the remaining €20,000 – 0.8% = €160
Total IPT payable = €400
If the same property is registered in joint names (e.g. between a husband and wife) each of their IPT liability will be calculated on half the 1980 value – €30,000 – and each will be asked to pay:
On their half share (€30,000) – 0.6% = €180
Total IPT payable by both joint owners – €360 (€180 each)
Permanent residents can either wait for their Immovable Property Tax notices to be delivered and then register and pay on-line via the JCC Smart website by clicking on the Inland Revenue icon – or they may visit their local Inland Revenue office, taking with them:
- The Title Deeds for all the properties registered in their name – Form No. 131A – earlier version 131. (Note that clear photocopies may be acceptable).
- Their ‘Yellow Slip’ – Certificate of Registration – Form No. MEU1.
- A completed Form 303.
- In some cases a completed Form 302 may be required.
- ID Card or passport.
(Those who have received their Immovable Property Tax notice may also visit their local Inland Revenue Office or bank and pay using cash or credit card, taking the tax notice and ID Card or passport with them – participating banks – the Bank of Cyprus, Hellenic Bank, Alpha Bank Cyprus, Ethniki Bank (Cyprus), Piraeus Bank (Cyprus) Ltd, Emporiki Bank-Cyprus, USB Bank, Eurobank (Cyprus) or their co-operative bank).
The registered owners of property who are not resident in Cyprus and who are unable to visit their local Inland Revenue office may appoint a representative on the island to deal with this matter on their behalf. They should provide their representative with:
Their permanent address and other contact details.
- A clear copy of their passport.
- A clear copy of the Title Deed for each property registered in their name.
Alternatively, they may send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org stating:
- Their name and contact details (permanent address and telephone number)
- Details of the property (the title registration number, sheet, plan, block, and plot as shown on its Title Deed)
The Inland Revenue will send them the forms to complete and return.
Inland Revenue forms 303 and 302
Inland Revenue forms 303 and 302 are only available in Greek, but to help English-speakers to complete them I have translated the both forms. In addition I have mapped the relevant entries on a Title Deed to the relevant table entries on the form 303. (Note that the table on form 302 is identical to that on the form 303).
Early payment discount
Those who pay their IPT by 5th November will enjoy a 10% discount, while those who delay paying until after the 15th November will face a penalty of 10% on the tax they owe plus a pro-rata 4.75 per cent annual interest rate.
Inland Revenue help lines
The Inland Revenue has opened a number of help lines for those with Immovable Property Tax queries:
I would like to thank Mrs Liana Charalambous Tanou, Chief Revenue Officer with the Inland Revenue Department in Nicosia, and the management and staff of the Limassol Inland Revenue office for their time and patience in explaining the IPT payment system to me.