There are no properties in Laois worth more than €200,000, according to the taxman’s valuations for the Government as part of collecting the new Local Property Tax (LPT).
The vague valuation map on the Revenue website values a property on what it is eg bunglaow, detached etc and when it was built. According to the map there are no detached houses in Laois, built before 2000, with a value greater than €150,000,
Among detached houses built after 2000, just three areas - Ballybrittas, Jamestown and Kilcomlanbane fell into valuation band 3, €150,001 - €200,000. The majority of properties in Laois were in valuation band 1 and 2: €0 to €100,000 and €100,001 to €150,000.
But the valuation guide map does not tally with the property price register. This year alone, two properties in Killenard sold for or €335,000 and €380,000 respectively. According to the register, the highest price paid for a single residential property since 2010 was €970,000 at Carrick Hill, Portlaoise on June 1, 2011.
Revenue have warned homeowners that they must value their own properties and how much they have to pay. Undervalued properties will be open to investigation by Revenue.
The LPT will replace the existing Household Charge, introduced last year, which 10,000 Laois households refused to pay.
Fianna Fail TD, Sean Fleming, described Revenue’s valuation guide as a “shambles.”
“While there are a lot of properties tha wouldn’t get over €100,000, there have been some very large houses built in the last few years also.
“They have confused people and put it into people’s minds to put down a low valuation. They would have been better not to put anything up,” he said.
Brian Stanley TD, Sinn Fein, said the low valuations were a deliberate ploy not to alarm homeowners.
“Revenue have been told to be cautious in their valuations so homeowners will not be alarmed at first.
“This is a tax with no new services being provided and no money for the exisiting ones. It’s simply to fill a gap in the state finances, left by the previous Government.”