Millions of property owners are wondering how much property tax they will have to pay from 2025. The cities and municipalities have the final say on the assessment rates. In a good dozen of them, the location is already heavenly for owners. property tax? Nobody has to pay here.
Are you one of those people who, instead of watching winter sports on TV, watched the property tax return on the computer at the weekend? The deadline is January 31st. Anyone who hasn’t gotten into the pot to date is threatened with a friendly warning from the tax office in the best-case scenario.
However, in the course of the revaluation of around 36 million properties in Germany, it could become even more uncomfortable for property owners – if the property tax to be paid from 2025 were to increase massively.
This, in turn, essentially depends on two factors: the property tax amount (value of the property) and the local authority’s assessment rate. If you want to have an indication of how much is due in the future, you only have to multiply the measurement amount and the assessment rate.
For example, if the real estate tax amount is notional 60 euros for a condominium in Munich and the assessment rate in the Bavarian state capital remains at 535 percent, the calculation is: 60 euros times 5.35 is equal to 321 euros in property tax per year.
The tax office communicates the real estate tax assessment amount in the real estate tax assessment notice. How high the assessment rate will be at the end of 2024 is difficult to estimate at this point in time. The German Association of Towns and Municipalities is assuming that the assessment rates will rise overall, but because of the lower real estate tax measurement number, lower real estate tax measurement amounts. The property tax flows completely into the municipal coffers.
There are already property owners in Germany today who don’t give a damn about this discussion. They, too, are not spared the task of filing the property tax return, but they do not pay a cent for their property. Neither property tax B for developed and undeveloped land nor property tax A for agricultural and forest land.
One such example is the Eifel town of Reuth. In the 174-inhabitant community, three wind turbines went online in 2016. “Thanks to the annual rental income for the community, we were able to forgo the collection of property tax,” reports local mayor Ewald Hansen to FOCUS online. This also applies to local farmers.
In this way, the municipality waives income from property tax of 23,000 euros per year. Analogous to the term of the wind turbines, i.e. 20 to 25 years, the property tax rate should remain at 0 percent.
Also in Rhineland-Palatinate is Wahlbach in the Rhein-Hunsrück district, another real estate tax oasis. It currently has around 180 residents. “First of all, we earn our income like all other communities,” explains Mayor Alexandra Krebs.
“In addition, as is the case in several municipalities in the Rhein-Hunsrück district, the local municipality generates income from wind turbines in its district.” The municipality makes a new decision on the assessment rates in each budget period due to the current financial situation. “Currently, only the assessment rate for property tax B is 0,” emphasizes the mayor.
According to a study by the auditing and consulting company EY (Ernst
On the other hand, homeowners in Horath, around 60 kilometers from Wahlbach, have to be prepared for bad news. Here the municipality will reintroduce property tax B this year. According to local mayor Jan Steffes, the assessment rate is then 365 percent.
In Schleswig-Holstein, Norderfriedrichskoog is one of a total of eight municipalities in the northern German state that do not levy property taxes. Koog, which has a good 40 inhabitants, on the North Frisian peninsula of Eiderstedt is located directly on the Wadden Sea.
Mayor Jann-Henning Dircks reports in an interview with FOCUS online that the community is simply doing well financially and also has manageable expenses. For example, there are hardly any roads that have to be maintained. “We as a municipality are not dependent on income from the property tax, so we do without it,” Dircks clarifies on the phone.
For years, Norderfriedrichskoog was known as the “letterbox village” in the republic. However, this was not due to the property tax, but to the second municipal tax. For a long time, no trade tax was levied by the municipality, with the result that numerous subsidiaries of large German corporations settled here and many of the thatched roof houses suddenly adorned company signs.
The reform for the new property tax is complex – and this year it will require owners. You have to submit some data to the tax office. You have to be very precise and observe special deadlines. In our large guide you will find all the information you need to know in a compact form.
In 2004, however, the legislature put an end to this and introduced a minimum rate of 200 percent for trade tax. Norderfriedrichskoog could not escape this either. As a result, the companies successively said goodbye.
According to EY, no property tax is levied in Schleswig-Holstein in the following municipalities either:
In Büsingen (district of Konstanz) in Baden-Württemberg, property tax is also a foreign word. The municipality currently has at least 1582 inhabitants.
When asked by FOCUS online, it said: “As an exclave, we are subject to Swiss VAT. Switzerland reimburses Büsingen’s share to the municipality as a lump sum. According to the agreement from the year 2000, this money should benefit the population in full. For this reason, the municipal council has set the property tax rate to zero. This is likely to remain the case.”
And that’s good property tax news from the southwest for a change.5