Land Tax Valuation On The Rise In A Recession!

Submitted by Charles Knighton


Wayne Forde, Land Tax Commissioner

It is a shame Mr. Sanka Price “CRUEL crying out for relief” June 29th Nation, penned his comment before the Land Tax Department of the Ministry of Finance & Planning posted this year’s “Notice of Valuation”. Government seems utterly determined to undermine its citizen’s discretionary spending  which supports the entrepreneurial classes Mr. Price mentioned in order to support a bloated, inefficient bureaucracy which is rapidly becoming rapacious.

The only difference from last year’s valuation to this year’s is that both I as well as my home are one year more decrepit. Considering that, as well as the current economic malaise I found myself bemused to note an almost THIRTY PERCENT increase in the “improved value” of my property. My wife commented that as far as contemplated renovations were concerned we may have to either postpone or cancel, as now ” another shoe has fallen”.  In agreeing, I noted that since the current government came to power shoes have been falling as salt from a shaker, and they bruise when they hit.

Should government continue their confiscatory policies in an effort to sustain the unsustainable, they may expect a Pyrrhic victory.

0 thoughts on “Land Tax Valuation On The Rise In A Recession!

  1. I too am hearing about these increases, I suffered one last year, it would be ridiculous indeed to have another.

    The thing is, at a time when house prices are falling due to reduced demand and increased supply (have you seen the sheer number for sale), it seems that the Government is trying to bolster the value of existing house prices by inflating land tax vales, thus ostensibly ‘protecting the real estate marker and banks who own the mortgages.

    Maybe someone has asked for this to be done, you know that real estate gurus here hold much weight.

    Sadly, yuh cant flog a dead horse. If it dead…it dead. All that going happen is that yuh go nowehere fast.

  2. By the way, are the banks here sitting on ‘dead mortgages’? With the sheer number of houses for sale, have some previous speculators (and banks now as a result), been burned?

    I suspect so……but a land tax valuation cant turn a corn beef cutter into a steak cutter.

  3. As I understand it, every three years land values are revised in Barbados. However, I have never seen a time when the valuations were revised downward.

    The present Government has made so many unpopular decisions that they are being blamed for making another unpopular decision even before it is made. But you know what they say: when a dog suck eggs. An increase valuation does not necessarily mean that the amount of tax payable to the Commissioner of Land Tax would increase.

    I hope that Government would be sensible enough to realise that wage earners in this country cannot be expected to absorb another increase, especially when they are asking workers to settle for a wage freeze. I fully expect that Government would lower the rate of the tax payable in order to eliminate an increase in the dollar value of the tax payable. So I am going to withhold any criticism of Government until the tax demand notices come out at the end of the year. After all the Minister could lower the rate during his imminent budget presentation. For Pete’s sake redeem yourselves: lower the rate of tax payable.

  4. A perusal of the real estate ads over the past several months suggests that property values should be coming down rather than going up. From the chapeau to this discussion it seems that at least one family has had his property revalued upwards by almost 30%. Mine has been revalued upwards by about 6%. It might be interesting to get some idea from posters of what is the general trend in the new valuations.

  5. I am not an expert on land tax but presumably the correct improved value is what the property would sell for in the market. The attorney reports the price paid to the land tax department and thats what they use as the improved value.
    Almost every property owner I know has a lower land tax valuation on their house than they know it is worth in the market.
    I have had surreal conversations with people over the years who have been complaining at this time of year about the rise in their valuation. The thrust of the conversation goes along the following lines:
    – They say their valuation has gone up by 10% (or whatever).
    – I ask what the actual valuation is.
    – They shrug and say $250,000.
    – I say that their place must be worth $500,000.
    – They agree but tell me that’s not the point. How dare the land tax dept raise their tax by 10%.
    Sorry if this is an unpopular comment but a 30% rise may be entirely correct if the house was always undevalued.
    Part of the reason why Barbados has a financial deficit is because (as in Greece) there are too many people outside the tax net, or who underpay.
    If your land tax bill has gone up, I sympathise with you.
    If the Land Tax Department has overvalued it, I am sure there are routes to appeal against the valuation and I hope you win your appeal.

  6. Increase valuations on properties is STANDARD and happens every TWO years – irregardless to who’s in power. It’s NOT new and certainly isn’t surreal… And YES – the value placed on properties by the Land Tax Dept for tax purposes is usually a good 1/3 less than the house is valued on the Real Estate Market……

    • The reality of the situation St. George’s Dragon and Former Land Tax Valuer not withstanding, we are in a bearish market as far as real estate is concern.

      It appears to be unrealistic if as was stated land is valued at 2 year intervals that we should experience an increase.

      Even if one assume in 2008/09 there was an undervalue the ensuing period, recession and all would have eroded any gains.

  7. Bearish market notwithstanding, look at the value the Land Tax Department assesses your house at.
    Look at what it is worth.
    If their assessment is over the real value, then appeal.
    If not, sorry, but suck it up.

  8. What is Mr Franklyn talking about the end of the year? The notices are already out. Mine came yesterday.

  9. @ Former Land Tax Valuer

    Hypothetically, if I was one of the poor souls who played by the rules and whose attorney reported the actual transaction price I paid to the Land Tax Department, how would I take advantage of the general 1/3rd undervaluation you mention?
    Trickey, I guess.
    Possibly that’s the reason why I don’t have much sympathy for a general moan about valuation increases.

  10. Jack Spratt
    I believe what you got yesterday was a valuation notice: it is not a tax bill. If I understand it correctly, the notice that you received merely tells you the new value that the Land Tax Department has placed on your house. If you think that the property is over-valued, you can appeal the assessment. The new value is the figure on which you will be taxed. If Government does not lower the rate of the tax, at the end of the year when your bill is sent out you will see an increase in the amount of tax that you would be required to pay. I am waiting to see if Government would lower the rate, any criticism of Government on this score would therefore be premature. You don’t have to jump the gun to criticise the present administration, wait!

  11. Since most respondents are anonymous can anyone state the actual amount that they paid in land taxes e.g. last year?

  12. I paid $200 last year.

    Yes caswell it is a notice of valuation that was received. Yes you can appeal the valuation, and to be honest the govt’s vauation is sometime 30-50% less than what you will get for your property.

    I have checked my last year’s tac demand notice against the notice of valuation and observed that the site value of my land has moved from $93 000 to $143 000, but improved site value is $300 000, while on last year’tax demand notice the site value was $325 000.

  13. as mr franklyn indicated, the present administration has been making a lot of unpopular decisions but please be balanced and not rush to judgment of them before analysing the facts.

  14. @former valuer & Stgeorges ” And YES – the value placed on properties by the Land Tax Dept for tax purposes is usually a good 1/3 less than the house is valued on the Real Estate Market……”

    Nonsense, at least in my case. If I could get what they stated, let alone that plus 1/3 at market value, I would selll yesterday.

    And yes, I tried to appeal, but was told basically that they would tell me to get lost.

    Seriously, next time I get a valuation, I will write to the Commissioner asking for the name and address of the individuals willing to pay the stated amount for the property, that I may contact them to sell immediately.

  15. David,

    Andrew Mallalieu has written an article about this subject which is on the Terra Caribbean website and I found it very helpful. From a tourism perspective, I wonder if it might be possible to lodge any objection to the assessements ‘en masse’ through a trade association like the BHTA to help keep valuation costs down.
    I don’t know if you can copy Andrew’s article on BU.

    • Agreed nobody likes to pay taxes but why should existing property owners in a recession be burdened with more land taxes at this time?

      Perhaps the issue here is not discussing what rates currently exist but government instituting a temporary order to keep land tax rates at 2010 level until we navigate the current period.

    • Interesting point extracted from the Terra Caribbean website.

      Many of you will have property values below what you would accept in a sale and therefore you should accept the valuation assessment, bearing in mind that if it is substantially lower than actual value you do face the risk that if the property were to be compulsorily acquired you will be starting in a weak position to argue for higher compensation. If you think that the valuation may be higher than actual, then we suggest that you compare your property value using the 2008 valuation and the chart above. If the change falls outside of this range you should investigate further.

      Based on the limited assessment notices that we have seen thus far, we have concluded that there is a trend for a revaluation of values upwards. This is frankly not in keeping with market reality. There are very few properties that will sell for more in today’s market than they would have sold for at the peak of the property boom in 2008 when they were last assessed. There are strong grounds for objection in these cases.

  16. The whole valuation system needs revamping, as we travel around this country, we see many unpainted houses, One of the reasons for that is that unpainted houses are considered unfinished, hence a lower valuation, also those houyses with poor landscaping, therefore the Valuation Dept is somewhat responsible for some of the unpleasnt looking houses in our country.

  17. When I read some of these comments, I am even more convinced that we are becoming an unsympathetic nation which has lost the ability to put ourselves in other people’s shoes to see another side of a situation. I have seen this in attitudes to health care and immigration policy and now with this question of re-assessment of land values.

    Here is a real scenario with respect to these recently issued notices. A young professional couple buys a piece of land 14 years ago at a price which was a fraction of their combined salary. Seven years later they build a house on the land at a cost well within their bank determined mortgage limit.
    Initial tax assessment of the improved property value was about 70% of the combined actual cost of the land and the house and three years later it was reassessed to within 95% of the actual cost of the land and the price of construction which gave them a land tax bill of around $1600.

    However in the seven years since the house was build a few deep-pocketed foreigners showed interest in the neighbourhood and purchased lots at 5 to 6 times the initial purchase price. In addition the price of building has increased astronomically in that period. Their recent land tax valuation received earlier this week reflects these changes and now sets this value to just over $1 million which will result in a land tax bill of over $6000 come November.
    Based on this scenario, how can we separate the issue of the valuation from the tax rates. Did the so-called undervalued assessments result in an unreasonable tax take? What is the real value of that mortgaged property to the live-in owners? The fact is that any appreciation in value remains a mere number on paper unless they are selling, yet it remains the basis on which they are taxed and the tax rates do not take into account that this household’s income has not increased at the same rate as the rise in the speculative real estate market.

    If land tax is going to be continued to be based on these “market” values then surely any reasonable government should not ignore the ability of the homeowner to pay these taxes and an adjustment of the rates should be mandatory at the time of these assessments. In this case, the land tax assessment prior to this week reflected the real cost of what was actually spent (less inflation) rather than a speculative market value which has been skewed in recent times by inflows of foreign money which bear no reality to levels of earnings of average Barbadians. With salaries remaining flat for the last five or so years, this couple will now have to find an additional $4500 to meet this tax liability, at a time when like most middle income households they have had to make adjustments based on income lost through the removal of tax free allowances and increased expenses through increased VAT and rising energy and utility charges.

    This continued assault on the middle income sector for more and more taxes can only go on for so long but it is clear that this sector which represents a captive market for taxes through PAYE deductions has little political influence in Barbados.

  18. @plumber

    Interesting comment!

    We are obviously managing a demand and supply situation as far as real estate goes. We have high end which is a market segment that should not be influencing price in the mid and lower segments.

    Perhaps what we have in Barbados is an ‘arrangement’ where some players have a vested interest in stoking property price.

  19. My rubble house is over 250 years old, and my property gets flooded out during heavy rainfall. I have planted trees, kept the grass cut to make the property look decent. My leaking roof is old and rotted my windows are as old as the roof and all need replacing . I live in an agricultural village with open fields around me. Yet my improved value has also jumped 30%. I’ll admit that because of our size, land in Barbados will never be CHEAP and we cannot make or grow more. But with all the tax increases we have had the past three years this might be the straw that will break the donkey’s back.

  20. The discussion on land tax ought to have started a few years ago , when as I understand it, the former administration changed the methodology for taxing property.
    I am one of the persons severely affected by the “revaluation system”.
    In some cases, Barbadians who seek to secure a piece of land to pass on to their children, will find themselves paying more in land tax than the price they paid for the land.This would be a cruel cut, and goes against the grain of our family and national land heritage psyche.
    There must be abetter way to arrive at a land/property value.
    Could it perhaps be, that at the time of sale, a percentage of the selling price is assessed as a fair land value?

    I bought a piece of land for $60.000.00,19 years ago, spent $150.000.00borrowed

  21. The valuation placed by Land Tax Dept is $ find it excessive, and have difficulty in paying the tax at this rate.

  22. @independent:

    If you are feeling stretched now, you should consider developing the land and banking your profit.

    Development land, if in a desirable location, is in short supply.

    I see you do not mention its acreage, or how many children you envisage benefitting from its development.

    My advice from your stated position is that the time may now be ripe for teaming up with a developer to consolidate your capital gain, ensure your children’s birthright and mitigate your Land Tax obligations (which in my mind will only increase significantly, as the middle class are the GoB’s soft touch).

    Tax regimes always seem unfair to the groups at whom they are targeted,
    but you have to understand the political decision of those who put you in the crosshairs.

  23. It is quite simple. To avoid the vagaries of market valuations and an unfair burden (yes, one of the tenets of a decent tax system is fairness, that is a basid), the valuation should be based on cost + an index based on years since purchase.

    That is the fairest method.

  24. @Crusoe: “…the valuation should be based on cost + an index based on years since purchase.

    I respectfully disagree.

    Such a system would encourage people to “sit” on (own without using) properties for decades.

    This is why so many properties in Bridgetown (and throughout Barbados) are un-utilized and decrepit.

    Land should be used. Taxation should be configured such that it is disadvantaging to those who don’t use the land they own.

    In other words, owners of land should be encouraged to productively use the land they own.

  25. @ Crusoe

    I think it would be very divisive if two people living in identical houses next door to one another paid very different land tax amounts just because one bought years ago and the other recently.
    Land tax is a very blunt instrument but I am not sure the alternatives are any better. Britain brought in a per head poll tax which was considered very unfair. They now have a tax based on bands of property value and everyone complains about that.
    You could abolish land tax and increase the VAT rate to make up the difference. That would not go down well either.
    In the end, no-one likes paying tax.

  26. @David et al…

    Drive along the Barbados South Coast “Highway”, and just west of the Prime Minister’s Office you’ll encounter many properties which can only be described as having buildings because they have walls.

    The rooves are long gone.

    Most are boarded up.

    None are productive from an economic perspective.

    These represent prime real estate.


  27. @David: “Interesting point extracted from the Terra Caribbean website.

    To summarize.

    If 1 + 2 == 3, then 3 + 4 equals 7.

    Let 7 be a prime number.

    Who Hath Drawn the Circuit for the Lion?

  28. BU family please read page 7 of Barbadostoday.

    It should provoke some discussion with regards to land ownership.

  29. @St.Georges,

    Capital gains tax in Britain is based on the original purchase price, adjusted for the index reflecting the period of ownership, thus the longer you hold the property, your taxable gain is reduced, proportionately.

    Obviously, this is dependent on the size of gain or not. But the indexing remains.

    There is nothing wrong with having the land tax value indexed, it is indeed the fairest way.

    If I bought a property ten years ago, with the indexing it brings my value upwards.

    If you bought two years ago and paid more than I for a similar house, probably you saw more in the house than I did, why should I suffer?

    Indexing based on original cost is the fairest method. It also removes arbitrary valuations.

  30. @CH,

    That is a separate issue. For unutilised land you can have a separate and distinct rate, as opposed to valuation.

  31. @Crusoe

    Indexing based on original cost is the fairest method. It also removes arbitrary valuations
    That is an interesting proposal, but I have a question: If you sold that property several years after would you sell it at market value or would you sell it at the “indexed” value?

    I will make a wild guess and say that you would sell at the market price and having sold at the market price would you consider that your proposal is fair to the other owners who were paying higher taxes on their properties while your payments were lower but yet you enjoyed the benefit of the increased value.

    The only certainty is death and taxes

  32. The above scenarios suggest that people with money will be able to take advantage of those who may not be able to pay continuously escalating land tax.

    This concept of putting land to its best use is great if the economy is like Canada where investment opportunities abound.

    Barbados still has a lot of lower income property owners and persons on fixed income. No one should be forced to sell their property because of land taxes.

    Years ago some black bajans lost their inheritances to land tax and legal fees.

    I have heard a Lawyer say that “the children should “sell the land”.

    Of course rich white man would never say that unless the land was being sold to him.
    Rich white man get rich buying land and black lawyers telling black people to sell theirs.

    Now the black government is raising land tax and inadvertently aiding and abetting the rich vultures waiting to buy distressed properties.

    David uh being careful not to call nuh names so duh can’t sue me or you.

    • @Hants

      Had a read of the article and the point made on BU earlier and raised by Tierra Caribbean that there has been a trending downwards of land prices conflicts with the Commissioner of Land Tax position.

      The public deserves an explanation because Tierra Caribbean is in the market and as the Commissioner stated it is not a price making agency.

      What gives?

    • @Hants

      Your point is sound and all the more relevant when one considers a large percentage of the middleclass in Barbados is highly leveraged.

      Not good news in a recessionary climate where the same middleclass is being made to suffer increased personal taxation, removal of tax support etc.

  33. Earlier I asked folks to state (for comparison purposes) actual amounts that they paid in land taxes last year. So far “just only asking” has stated that he paid $200.00 which is an amount that many people will spend in Oistins tomorrow night.

    Since I shouldn’t ask anyone to do what I’m not prepared to do here are my figures, last year my property tax bill was $5605.00, this year it is estimated to be $5635.00, the assessed value of the property for the respective two years was $406,000 and $413,000. The assessed value is always set below the Market Value.

    What would my property fetch on the open market? Prices in my neighbourhood range from $500,000 to $900,000 and there are a few over $1million just beyond the periphery of my area.

    When our system changed to taxes based on Market Value I complained that the assessed value was too high, it was “adjusted” to a lower value but my taxes remained the same.

    In the far North non payment of property taxes are a sure way to loose your property so mine are always up to date, as for income taxes well that’s another story.

  34. @David,

    Property values can increase during an economic downturn especially in Barbados where building materials are imported.

    However it seems unusual that property taxes would increase by the percentages I am reading about. 30 to 50 % increases seem excessive.

    Goverment should not increase property taxes to a level that could force people to sell their property.

  35. SargeantI will make a wild guess and say that you would sell at the market price and having sold at the market price would you consider that your proposal is fair to the other owners who were paying higher taxes on their properties while your payments were lower but yet you enjoyed the benefit of the increased value.


    Sargeant, obviously the sale is at market value. What have other owners got to do with it? No one entered into a contract to make gains or losses with them. That portion is not relevant.

    If you are clever enough to envisage a great boom in one area, buy into it early, why should you not enjoy your gains?

    That is a separate issue from land tax. The point is that a fair system, non-punitive, must be in place.

  36. And Sargeant, in the last valuation my land tax bill went from around Bds 600 to over Bds 2,000.

    It hurt. And I know that it will take me ages to sell at the stated value, if I can get it at all, which I doubt right now.

    And in December, if I aint got the money, they can wait till the last moment next April, to get paid.

  37. @Crusoe

    Either you didn’t get my point or you are ignoring it. Your proposal as I understand it is as follows ; e.g. you buy a property ten years ago and the taxes are based on that price and indexed in the following years; your neighbour buys a property similar to yours one year ago and is taxed based on the price which is much higher than your purchase price.

    In effect we have two similar homes in the same neighbourhood but with different tax rates but if /when they are sold they command the same price. In effect your neighbour’s purchase helped contributed to the higher prices which you benefited from meanwhile you are paying taxes at a lower rate. When you add all the other properties which were bought in the intervening years at different prices it would be a whole mish mash of complicated tax calculations.

    If I lived in a neighbourhood where my neighbour’s taxes were significantly lower because he bought in a different time period I would be hopping mad. I could also see lawyers exploiting that loophole where a client agrees to purchase a house at one price which is recorded and there is a side agreement where they agree to pay an additional amount to avoid the taxes associated with the higher price.

    Could you also explain how the taxes would be handled if the property is not sold but inherited by someone, does the lower rate apply?

  38. I think all of the persons making comments on this post is missing the point. The notices that you received recently are not tax demand notices: they merely tell you what value the Land Tax Department has placed on your property for tax purposes.

    Taxpayers can object to the valuation, but better yet, they should be lobbying the Minister of Finance to lower the rate or abolish land tax period. Next door in St. Lucia there is no land tax so it is not unheard of.

    In Barbados, no tax is charged on land valued up to $150,000; thereafter a rate of 0.10% is charged on the excess up to $400,000; anything over that is charged at a rate of 0.45% up to $1million; in excess of a million the rate is 0.75%.
    In order to keep the dollar value of the at last year’s level, Government could increase the deductible of $150,000 and then lower the % rate charged. I suggest that is what the country should be calling on the Government to do. They must know by now that the people, even their people are fed up with all these increases.

  39. Caswell Franklyn
    Excellent suggestion, it now seems like a penalty to own a property in this country, this gives paid to the old adege ” every bajan want to own a piece of the rock.” now to do that is a burden. When someone builds a house in an ordinary area, then that area develops with expensive houses, why should that someone be penalised by excessive taxes, when all that person wants to do is live in the house they could have built at the time. Why in many cases persons are forced to sell because of excess taxes? isn’t this forcing the average bajan on to the unwanted areas?

  40. the Scout wrote “it now seems like a penalty to own a property in this country,”

    Yes there is a penalty but it is up to the Government to ensure that poor and middle class Barbadians are not unduly punished for property ownership.
    The COWs of this world might start grazing on distressed and foreclosure grass.

    Property Tax reform should be a hot topic in the next election.

  41. It has reached the point where I must admit, I’m renting my house from the government, even though I built and maintains it. When I divide my property taxes paid by twelve, the money paid per month to live in by own house is tantamount to a rental fee. What has happen is a communist system where everything is owned by the State

  42. While anyone is free to refer to me as naive, I have never been of the opinion that people don’t like paying taxes. Studies have repeatedly demonstrated that individuals who deem their taxes as fair and reasonable, and who perceive their taxes resulting in positive tangible benefits, feel it to be their patriotic duty to do so. Correspondingly, there is also a much smaller number attempting tax evasion. However, governments PERCEIVED to be plagued by inefficiency, cronyism , misfeasance or malfeasance garner no such patriotic fervor.

    Today in Barbados there are now approximately 34,000 public sector employees accomplishing the work of 18,000. When one attempts to deal with public sector personnel only to be met with indifference or outright incivility, from OUR civil servants (rapidly becoming oxymoronic) the thought of paying their salaries rankles. The terribly expensive and underutilized (though one can create a nice echo) Supreme Court edifice, as well as the terribly expensive and never utilized Greenland Landfill stick in one’s craw. The poor state of roads and other infrastructure appalls. Dilapidated structures and overgrown property everywhere the eye can see. There is more but enough of the picture has been painted.

    All of these examples in one of the most highly taxed jurisdictions in the world, and yet government seeks more. People are not balking at taxes per se, only the perceived waste of government.

  43. Independent responds to Christopher:
    Whereas the Land Tax value was $
    I did have an offer for $695.000.00.

    The fact of the matter is that most Barbadians are not in the real Estate business. The buying and selling of homes is more speculative than anything else.It is more for those who have some money to play with. The real estate market will give a better return on investment than putting money on the bank at 2 to 3 %.

    When a parent is forced to sell a plot of land which was bought with the intention of passing it on to his child or children, and the land tax becomes the significant burden that it has become, then I would suggest that our past value system is under threat.
    To suggest to me that I should sell the property for the one million dollars (if there was someone willing to pay that much), and pocket the money, one

    would also be saying to me “let the children fend for themselves”.

  44. Property ownership should be the foundation for building wealth in a family.

    I can state for a fact that I know one person who kept his property until he died because he decided that he would leave it for his children.
    It was not the best decision because he died property rich but cash poor and a living standard not as good as it should have been.

    Barbados claims to have accomplished a lot since the colonial days and Government must be careful not to put people’s properties to pasture for the COWs and vultures to graze on.

  45. @Independent:
    Did you misread my post?

    I certainly did not and would not suggest selling your land.

    With a Land Tax Valuation of $1m, I assume you have land in excess of 100,000sq.ft.

    My suggestion was to team up with a developer who you trust, build enough houses for your children’s needs, and others for resale to fund the whole project.

    That way your children get a house not raw land, you get a much reduced Land Tax bill, and some cash in the bank.

  46. The thing is, I wonder if these high valuations, inadvertently serve to avoid a catastrophe for the mortgage business?

    Does the Central Bank have available mortgage figures showing how much is in negative equity, as happened in the US?

    Such figures are freely available in the US, not here?
    How many in Barbados borrowed and borrowed based on the expected gravy train of real estate…now to find themselves owing?

    Of course, with high land tax valuations, there should not be many in negative equity…no? 😉

    The banks and mortgage companies must be praising the high tax valuations. Avoids write-offs.

    There is always a reason in Barbados.

  47. In anything, when the answer or most logical answers seem ludicrous, look for the real reason…….

  48. Oh and one last thing. CLICO balance sheet must be looking a bit better with revaluations…no?

    RFLMAO 😉

  49. @Caswell Franklyn | July 1, 2011 at 12:25 PM |
    “In Barbados, no tax is charged on land valued up to $150,000; thereafter a rate of 0.10% is charged on the excess up to $400,000; anything over that is charged at a rate of 0.45% up to $1million; in excess of a million the rate is 0.75%.”

    I need your help there…my land is valued@$115,000, I’ve been paying $690,00 bds for the last 5 years! I have been had!?!!!
    What should I do? (genuine question)

  50. Independent responds to Christopher:
    Whereas the Land Tax value was $
    I did have an offer for $695.000.00.

    Response to Straight Talk
    Thanks for the clarification. It’s 31,000 sq ft with 1,500 sq ft of house.
    The land is not 100,000 sq.ft.

    would also be saying to me “let the children fend for themselves”.

  51. @GG
    What about planting some cherry , mango, pomegranate, lime, lemon
    and any other fruit trees available from the Greenland Agricultural Station?
    The best time to do it would be now the rain is falling . I suppose I can add yam and cassava. You wouldn’t have to pay one cent for water and you might qualify for a tax reduction until you are ready to build on the land .

  52. My valuation has gone up by 20% or $85,000 for an ordinary suburban house.

    Like the writer of this article the only thing that has changed is that “both I as well as my home are one year more decrepit

    I am scared to get the tax demand notice.

    This is nothing but a tax grab by the government

  53. Also received a huge valuation increase for a piece of agricultural land in zone one which land tax describes as “vacant – land residential”. Only this year the Chief Town Planner refused permission to develop or subdivide this land.

    So doesn’t Land Tax talk to the Chief Town Planner?

    Isn’t the Minister responsible for Town Planning the same as the Minister responsible for Land Tax.

    I think it is high time that the Minister have a conversation with himself.

  54. Quoting “Sargeant | June 29, 2011 at 10:46 PM |
    Since most respondents are anonymous can anyone state the actual amount that they paid in land taxes e.g. last year?”

    I paid $700 last year.

  55. For the agricultural land in zone one which the Land Tax Commissioner calls “Vacant Land – Residential” the valuation is $166,800. The land changed hands this year through inheritance (not sale). The lawyer was paid $5,300 and the land tax payable for 2011-12 was $1,000 which had to be paid before the transaction could be completed. The Land Tax Commissioner granted a discount of $99.28, so that $900.72 tax was paid for a piece of land in zone one for which permission to build or subdivide has been refused by the Town Planning Department.

  56. Gentlemen and ladeis, I do not believeI that we should be paying any increase in land tax in these recessioanary times.

    I also believe that we could help ourselves, for axmample, plant some coconut trees, the one i have planted has become to tall so the guy passes around and pick them, i got $85 form him, i made $135 off my breadfuirt tree from the ones i reached with a stick, mu avocado ripe when there is a dearth in december, i made $338. I cant reach the golden apples and the mankey now would not let me get much of the soursop. In all i made more money off my 2×3 to pay my land tax. Yes I give away some of the fruites of my labour. I dont have to water them.

    If WE all do little thins like that, we can help ourselves. Note that i have said that i dont support any increase in land tax, we need a better method of collecting all taxes owe to government, then perhaps we migh not even have to pay increase in taxes in the future.

  57. @Random Thoughts….girl I was wondering what happened to you. I was about to put out an APB for you. Glad to see you here again.

    I remembered one year receiving a land tax bill that was lower than previous years. When I went to pay I asked why, the clerk checked and told me that I was being over billed the past few years. She told me to bring in the bills for the last three years and she would calculate the refund. Yes a REFUND. So I did as was asked and I did receive a refund cheque. My husband told me that he would never have asked in case they had made a mistake with the lower figure. I wonder if I have a case to appeal this 30% increase?

  58. @just only asking | July 3, 2011 at 7:19 AM | ….you selling fruit now? Be careful you will now need a license for that as well.

  59. Why should property taxes be increased while there are many overcrowded lots next to many of these properties? Where are the owners of these properties? why should someone else have to pay sometimes thousands of dollars to clear other person’s property, only to be taxed higher by government. I understand there is NO LAW to enforce the healthy care of these open overcrowded lots, hence the owners ignore warnings from any Government Dept about the lots being cleaned and the expenses put on there tax bill. i call on government to enforce or make it legal where each property owner MUST keep their property clear of be penalised.

  60. This gov’t joking. I don’t know if they suicidal or they betwitch. Sinkler must be planning to make an adjustment. if they don’t thigns would hav eot be worse than they letting on.

  61. @Scout

    Before you write, check to asceratain what is in the Healt Services Act and Regulations.

  62. @Hants

    The sooner the government pass and act insisting that tradmen, must be registered, the better for society. Electicians must be registered.

    That is disgusting to rob an old lady, i had an experience where a friend recmmended someone to do some elcetrical work and i had to end up with someone to complete the job and i wont trade him for the world, on another occasion i had to get another mason to complete a job and i am holding on to him as well.. Any thing i want done to the house i now use them.

    It is time that someone establish a database of dishonest workmnen and contractors, how about that? Experience is our best teacher.

  63. @Hants
    You did get butt by a BOVINE in your youth or whao??????LOL

    The bovine knight has already been requested to cease and desist from his proclivity to acquire the entire island. You milking this cow at every opportunity.LOL.

  64. It must be noted that Govts all over the world are desperate for CASH.
    Govts are worse than a rabid army of occupation, since such armies eventually go home.

    While I dont believe that Land taxes should be raised in hard times it is also true that historically many landowners had a very bad attitude to paying.

  65. While government will not change the property tax rates, owners will be asked to pay more because in some cases the valuation is doubled, hence we pay the same rate at a higher valuation which works out to a large increase in property tax.

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