Property Tax Compare and Contrast: Dublin and Boston

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Property taxes are a much needed form of revenue for cities and towns all over the world. However, the property valuation methods and the tax rates are different in different places. In Dublin, Ireland, the Local Property Tax, collected by the Revenue Commissioners, is a self-assessed tax. For any property that one owns, the owner must have determined the market value of the property as of 1 May 2013. Now, the amount a home or property owner pays for the tax is based on how much one claims the value of the house to be annually. This value of the property would then fall into one of twenty “bands.” 

Example: the property tax a homeowner would have to pay the Revenue Commissioners if they had a home valued between €250,001- €300,000 is €495 per year. This is because the Local Property Tax is .18% of the value of the property for homes that are under €1,000,000. However, if the property you own is in Dublin, there would also be a Local Authority Deduction from the €495 of 15%. Therefore, Dublin property owners save €75 and pays €420. 

For property owners that value their homes over €1,000,000, there is no band for the property. The first €1,000,000 of the home would be taxed at .18% like the other properties, and the remaining portion of the value of the home over €1,000,000 would be taxed at .25%.

Example: for a €2,000,000 home, the property owner would pay €4,300, disregarding the Local Authority. This is similar to the taxable income brackets in the United States.

In comparison, Boston, Massachusetts acquires property taxes in a different fashion. The City of Boston has a Property Tax Classification System. The classification system allows Boston to give different rates to residential and commercial properties. The City determines the value of the properties, thus differing from the Ireland self-assessed tax, and taxes the property owners a rate in dollars for each $1,000 of value their home has in a given year.  

Boston, Massachusetts values the properties every fiscal year. The year starts on July 1 and ends June 30. The tax rate in 2020 for residential properties is $10.56, and for commercial properties, the tax rate is $24.92. 

Example: if a Boston residential property owner had a home valued at $600,000, the property tax would be $6,336 annually.

Compared to Dublin, a $600,000 Boston residential home has a significantly higher property tax. A Dublin €600,000 residential home would cost €1,080. However, the difference in rates is interesting. While Dublin taxes a percentage rate while Boston taxes a dollar rate, both cities are accomplishing the same thing: acquiring revenue for the city