Homeowners could see property-tax refund

Economy minister stops short of promising refund to homeowners who paid too much in property tax due to assessment errors

Homeowners who have paid too much in housing taxes due to inaccurate assessments could be in line for a refund.

The economy and interior minister, Margrethe Vestager (Radikale), said she would push for the refund after it was revealed last month that as many as 75 percent of property assessments carried out by Skat, the tax agency, were wrong.

“People must be able to count on their property tax evaluations, now and in the future. And if you have paid too much in taxes, then you should get some money back,” Vestager told Jyllands-Posten newspaper. “That goes for this area, just as it does in others.”

Problems with property assessments were detailed in a report released by state auditors Rigsrevisionen, which criticised Skat and the Tax Ministry for continuing to inaccurately evaluate property values even though assessors were aware of the errors.

A total of 1.7 million homes were assessed incorrectly. In the second half of 2011 34 percent of homes were under assessed, while 41 percent were overassessed. All were at least 15 percent off from their market value.

Vestager’s comments come after the tax minister, Holger K Nielsen (Socialistisk Folkeparti), initially suggested Skat might not refund excess taxes, even though he accepted part of the blame.

Skat took over responsibility for property assessment from local councils in 2003. Last year, it collected 38 billion in property taxes. 




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