THERE has been a surge in demand for surveyors to carry out work valuing homes ahead of the property tax deadline next month.
Homeowners have to submit a new valuation for their home by November 1, the first revaluation since 2013.
They then have to indicate a week later how they plan to pay the tax.
Everyone has to submit a return, even if they have been paying the property tax since it was introduced eight years ago.
And around 100,000 homeowners are now being told to submit a return and pay it for the first time.
The Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland (SCSI) said its members are seeing increased demand for property valuations from homeowners, especially in the Greater Dublin Area.
The society warned property owners to get the valuation right and not be tempted to go for a lower band to save money now.
That decision may cause complications if or when the property is put up for sale down the line, the SCSI said.
President of the SCSI, Cork-based estate agent, TJ Cronin said the key point for homeowners is to avoid storing up problems for the future.
“While we’re also seeing increased demand for valuations in Cork, as in Dublin its tending to be for the more expensive properties.
“While some people may be tempted to go for a lower band to save some money in the here and now, that decision may cause complications if or when the property is put up for sale down the line.”
Chartered surveyor and estate agent based in Dublin Colin Smyth said his office has been extremely busy with valuations over the past month.
He says most homeowners just want to get the valuation right first time.
“Property taxes, more than other types of tax, probably do stir up emotions and people can become anxious about it. They want to ensure their tax affairs are in order and don’t really want to engage with the Revenue.”
Mr Smyth advised that if most homes in the area are a similar type or there have been a lot of transactions or it’s a recent development, assessing the value and choosing a band can be relatively straightforward.
But if it is not or people are still unsure they should put in a call to a chartered surveyor or estate agent who will be able to provide them with an accurate valuation.”
“As well as peace of mind a professional valuation may save you money. We had one case where it was suggested the property should be in Band 17, whereas market evidence suggested Band 13 might be more appropriate.”
SCSI advised homeowners to act now and prepare their submission in good time.
It said that taxpayers can use the property valuation guide on the website of the Revenue Commissioners.
Another source of information is the State’s Property Price Register, propertypriceregister.ie. But when studying the register property owners should make sure they are comparing like with like, the SCSI said.
This involves considering the overall size, number of rooms, condition, positioning and orientation of the property.
Surveyors said owners should ask themselves if they would be happy to sell their property at this valuation.
Homeowners should then check how much Local Property Tax they will pay at this, or other bands, by referring to the Revenue’s ‘Calculate Your Local Property Tax section on its website.
Those who still have concerns should call a chartered surveyor valuer or estate agent.
Mr Smyth said: “When you’re happy with the valuation proceed and submit your valuation online via myAccount.ie, or lpt.revenue.ie, or in paper form using the LPT1 form before November 7.”
Those who have done this should alert family members or neighbours who may not be aware of their obligations, Mr Smyth said.
The guide is available on the website of the Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland, at www.scsi.ie.