Each year we send out more than 300,000 land tax assessment notices to customers. The information here will help you understand why you have received an assessment (possibly for the first time), and what you need to do next.
We are committed to ensuring all taxpayers pay the correct amount of land tax, so it’s important that you check the accuracy of your assessment and contact us promptly with any errors or omissions.
Please note: we do not adjust land tax assessments for property bought, sold or settled during an assessment year. Your solicitor or conveyancer can advise you about any land tax adjustments made on settlement.
Scroll down or click on these links for information that will help you understand your land tax assessment.
- Is this the first time you’ve received an assessment?
- What do you do now?
- Can you claim an exemption?
- Errors in your assessment
- Penalties for errors or omissions
- How is land tax calculated?
- Disagreeing with your valuation
- Objecting to your assessment
- Lands acquired on trust
- When are land tax assessments issued?
- Have you received two or more assessments?
- Owning land with others
- Land held on trusts
- Single holding tax
- Proportional tax
- Special land tax
You have received an assessment for the first time. This is because our records indicate one of the following:
- Your total taxable land value is now equal to or has exceeded the $250,000 threshold,
- You have purchased land in the past calendar year, such as an investment property or holiday home, or
- An exemption has been removed, so your land becomes liable for land tax
You pay land tax when the total value of all the Victorian property you own as at 31 December, minus exempt land such as your home, is equal to or exceeds the threshold of $250,000 each calendar year (for trusts, it's $25,000).
This means the value of all the taxable property you own at midnight on 31 December of any given year determines if we need to assess you for land tax for the following year.
You should check your assessment to confirm four critical points:
- Your postal and residential address(es) are correct,
- All lands that you own, including any land that you own with others, are included in your assessment,
- The lands shown in your assessment are/were still owned by you as at midnight on 31 December of the previous year,
- If you live in a property you own, that it (and not any other property) is marked as your principal place of residence on the Statement of Lands page
If any of the above details are incorrect or you want to claim an exemption, you must tell us within 60 days of receiving your assessment.
Your home (principal place of residence) is exempt from land tax, as is primary production land and land used by charities. Exempt land does not include investment properties or holiday homes you may own, even if they are vacant.
If you move overseas to live or work for an extended period, this may also affect your principal place of residence exemption status.
Certain details are easy to change by phone if they are incorrect. You can request an amendment if you:
- Want to update your postal address,
- As at midnight 31 December of the previous year, don’t own land that is included on your assessment, or
- Want to claim an exemption for land included in your assessment because it is your principal place of residence or primary production land
You must notify us of errors or omissions in your assessment so we can ensure you pay the right amount of tax at the right time. You must notify us if you:
- Own additional land which has not been included in your assessment or the land is held on trust,
- Receive separate assessments for lands you own alone,
- Are receiving a principal place of residence exemption for land that is not, or is no longer, your principal place of residence (your home), or
- Have received any other exemption for which you are not eligible
You must contact us within 60 days of receiving your assessment. If you do not notify us in this time, penalty tax may apply.
Your assessment is calculated on the total taxable value of your land holdings (the site value usually found on your council rates notice) as at midnight on 31 December of the preceding year (for example, what you own as at midnight on 31 December 2016).
Land tax is calculated by selecting the appropriate land tax rate and applying this to the total taxable value of your land holdings (excluding exempt land such as your home).
Our calculator will help you estimate your land tax liability, if you own property either by yourself or jointly with others.
If you disagree with the valuation used in your 2017 assessment you can object to it by completing and lodging a Land Valuation Objection Form.
A valuation objection must be lodged with us within two months of receiving the assessment.
Note: if you want to object to the valuation in your council rates notice, you need to contact your council directly to do this.
However, if you have already lodged an objection to the valuation with your municipality or the SRO within the past 12 months, you cannot lodge a further objection to that valuation.
If you have an issue with your assessment which cannot be resolved through an amendment and you think you have been incorrectly assessed, you can formally dispute the matter by lodging an objection.
This is a more formal process than requesting an amendment. To dispute your assessment, you must complete and lodge an objection and provide detailed reasons to support your view.
We must receive your objection within 60 days of the date you received your land tax assessment.
Even if you have lodged an objection you must still pay your land tax in full by the due date, or you may also be charged with interest. If your objection is successful, any amount overpaid will be refunded with interest.
We will advise you of the outcome of your objection in writing.
All trustees acquiring Victorian land must notify us within one month of any acquisition. This is in addition to the general obligation to lodge a notice of acquisition.
Generally we send land tax assessments to you or your authorised representative between late January and late May each year.
We are committed to ensuring that all taxpayers pay the correct amount of land tax and, as such, you may receive an assessment (including assessments for previous land tax years) at other times of the year.
For example, if we discover a principal place of residence exemption has been incorrectly applied to your land, we may issue reassessments to recover the land tax you should have paid for the years you have incorrectly received the exemption. You may also be charged penalty tax.
You may receive more than one assessment but you should receive only one individual assessment. This should list all the Victorian land you own individually plus any land you own jointly with others.
If you receive more than one individual assessment, you must call us on 13 21 61 so that we can correctly record the land(s) you own.
You may also receive a separate joint assessment if you own land jointly with others. You will receive this on behalf of the other owners.
If you own land as the trustee of a trust, you may receive a separate trust assessment.
Note: there is no need to call us unless you receive more than one individual assessment.
If you own land with others, in whatever ownership structure, you are a joint owner of land.
You may own land with different people. Each unique combination of owners is considered a different joint ownership. Joint owners are assessed for land tax in a different way.
Land held on trust is treated differently from land held by a person in their own right.
In 2017, if you own land as trustee of a trust for the benefit of a beneficiary, you will have to pay land tax if the aggregate of the taxable Victorian land holdings of the trust are valued at $25,000 or more.
Further, a surcharge rate on the general land tax applies for the aggregate Victorian land holdings of the trust from $25,000 through to less than $3 million. The surcharge ceases to apply for taxable land holdings valued at $3 million or more.
The trust surcharge rule is subject to various exclusions and exceptions. It does not apply to certain trusts, such as an administration trust. Trustees may also avoid the surcharge rate by notifying us of the beneficial interests in land or unitholders of the trust.
Corporations are related in certain circumstances. Where two or more corporations are related, the Commissioner may treat them as a group for land tax purposes.
The taxable value of all Victorian lands owned by a group is aggregated to calculate the land tax payable on those lands. Members of a group are jointly and severally liable for the land tax payable by the group.
Note: Land held by a trustee of a trust is not grouped for land tax purposes however you are required to notify us that the land is held on trust.
Single holding tax is the amount of tax you would pay on one property (as if it was the only property you owned).
For example, if you own three taxable properties, then three separate single holding tax amounts will be shown on your assessment.
Single holding tax is shown against each taxable property on the Statement of Lands page of your assessment. Your principal place of residence and any other exempt land is not included in this calculation.
Proportional tax is the tax applicable to a particular land as a proportion of the total land tax liability of your assessment.
For example, if you own four taxable properties, then four separate proportional tax amounts will be shown on your assessment.
Proportional tax is shown against each taxable property on the Statement of Lands page of your assessment. Your principal place of residence and any other exempt land is not included in this calculation.
Special land tax is a one-off tax charged in certain circumstances where land that was exempt loses its exempt status.It is charged at a rate of five cents for each dollar of the taxable value of the land at the date the land ceased to be exempt.
If you are an absentee owner, you will be charged at a rate of 6.5 cents for each dollar of the taxable value of the land.
Notices of assessment for special land tax are issued on a case by case basis, and can be issued at any time.