Frequently asked questions vastgoedbelasting

1. What is the vastgoedbelasting?

The vastgoedbelasting is a tax on immovable goods (real estate) located in the Dutch Caribbean. The tax is usually levied from the owner, or from his/her fiscal representative. There are a various exemptions, reason why not all immovable goods are subject to the vastgoedbelasting.


Explanation:

For taxable entities, for example corporations, this new tax together with the opbrengstbelasting replaces the winstbelasting. For natural persons (private individuals) the vastgoedbelasting replaces the levy on rental income in the inkomstenbelasting.

2. To whom does the vastgoedbelasting apply?

In practice taxes are levied from: Persons who have a second home on the islands, rent out an apartment or own a corporate building.
Formally the tax is levied from: the private or legal person that at the beginning of the year has the enjoyment of the immovable goods in the Dutch Caribbean based on ownership, possession or a limited right such as the leasehold right (erfpachtrecht). Also if the private or legal person does not live or is not established in the Dutch Caribbean, there is a tax liability for the vastgoedbelasting. There a various exemptions, because of this not all immovable goods are subject to the vastgoedbelasting.


Explanation:

The vastgoedbelasting is not applicable for:

  • The ‘own home’, that is the house the owner uses as his main residence.
  • Immovable goods that belong to the business assets of an IB-c orporation (proprietorship).
  • Immovable goods that are owned by an entity, which based on the opbrengstbelasting is not established in the Dutch Caribbean.
  • Read also the explanation at the end of this document, concerning the changes in law, as proposed in October 2012.

Please note: An immovable good is for example: a house, a vacation home, a piece of construction land, an office or a restaurant.

3. For which immovable goods exemptions are applicable for the VGB?

The most common exemptions are:
  • The ‘own home’ which is used as main residence by the owner.
  • Immovable goods intended for public worship (churches), with exception of a residence; Immovable goods that are owned by the Kingdom or Public Entities of the Dutch Caribbean, which are not used for economic activities.
Explanation:
Government office, schools etc.
  • Immovable goods that are owned by inhabitants (private individuals) from the Dutch Caribbean, and which have a value lower than USD 50.000. Read also the explanation at the end of this document, concerning the changes in law, as proposed in October 2012.
  • Immovable goods, of an entity which is considered to be established in the Netherlands. In that case the entity is subject to the vennootschapsbelasting.
  • Uncultivated land without destination, if the owner is an inhabitant (natural person) from the Dutch Caribbean.

4. Over which year do I pay vastgoedbelasting?

The tax is levied yearly on January 1st from the one who is the owner of the immovable good at that point in time. For the first time you will receive an assessment for 2011.

5. What is a value decree?

The value decree indicates the value of your immovable good for the vastgoedbelasting. The taxable vastgoedbelasting is determined based on this value. The value is determined by the price that is obtained if the immovable good is delivered in the condition it was on January 1st, 2011 and can immediately be used by the buyer.

6. How is the value decree determined? How is the value of my house/building determined?

  • The Belastingdienst keeps track of information concerning immovable goods.
  • The value is determined for each immovable good individually and is stipulated in a value decree.
  • When determining the value, amongst others information from the land registry concerning sales prices, the surface area of the parcel and the developed surface, is used.
  • Ground prices have been determined for various areas, see Ground prices Saba, St Eustatius en Bonaire
  • Also advertisements, information from real estate agents and previously published appraisal reports are taken into consideration.

7. Is the value determined in an objective manner?

See question # 6

8. How often will I receive a value decree?

In principal you will receive the value decree once every 5 years, unless there are important adaptations in the immovable good, for example because of reconstruction or demolition. Changes in value as a consequence of market developments are not considered a reason for interim adaptations. The vastgoedbelasting you have to pay is herewith unchanged for 5 years.


Explanation:

Once every 5 years, unless interim adaptations are of influence on the value of the object. If the immovable good changes in the year prior to the levy period as a consequence of construction, reconstruction, correction, demolition or destruction, the value is determined including the change and this value will then be applicable as of the beginning of the next calendar year.

9. On my land there are 2 (or 3 or more) buildings (objects). Will a value decree be prepared for each building?

An individual value decree is prepared if every object, judged by its division, is intended to be used completely separately.


Explanation:

For example: for an apartment this should be freestanding with its own entrance, own sanitary resources, own kitchen, etc.

10. Why do I receive an assessment?

You receive an assessment, because you have been assigned as taxable for the VGB by B/CN.

11. How do they come up with the amount on the assessment?

By calculating the proceeds over the determined value, over which tax is then levied. See question 13.

12. How often will I receive an assessment for the vastgoedbelasting?

For as long as you remain taxable for the vastgoedbelasting, you will receive a yearly assessment for the VGB.

13. How much vastgoedbelasting do I have to pay?

The vastgoedbelasting is levied over the immovable good. This happens in two steps. First the proceeds will be determined. That is 4% of the value of the immovable good. Subsequently this is charged against a tariff of 25%. Because of this, the effective vastgoedbelasting is 1% over the value of the immovable good. On Bonaire an additional 15% surtax is calculated based on the amount of the assessment, for the benefit of the island territory.

  • Read also the explanation at the end of this document, concerning the changes in law, as proposed in October 2012.

Explanation:
An example. The value of the immovable good is USD 100.000. Step 1.The return of 4% is then USD 4.000. Step 2. On this amount 25% VGB is paid, which is USD 1.000. For Bonaire there is an additional island surtax of 15% of the a mount of the assessment. The assessment including surtax will be USD 1.150.

14. How is the assessment calculated?

The taxable proceeds are set at 4% of the value, as indicated in the value decree. The vastgoedbelasting charged here over is 25%.


Explanation:

Read also the explanation at the end of this document, concerning the changes in law, as proposed in October 2012.

15. Over which year do I receive an assessment?

In 2012 you will receive the assessment for 2011 and for 2012.

16. How do I pay?

The ways to pay are mentioned on the assessment form. The assessment should be paid in one payment. B/CN offers a number of ways to pay. You may chose the way of payment that fits you best:

  • Cash payment at the cashier of your tax office;
  • A payment order at your bank;
  • Internet banking.

Your account statement serves as proof of payment.


Explanation:

Account numbers:

  • Bonaire: MCB 402.91.708
  • B.D.C. 306.388.01
  • ORCO 760.100.01.95
  • RBTT 180.87.299
  • GIRO 21.00.000
  • Saba: Windward Island Bank-BCN 810.500.00
  • Sint Eustatius: Windward Island Bank-BCN 820.50.000
  • First Caribbean Bank 10053541

17. Can I pay in installments?

No. The assessment should be paid in one payment. If this is a problem, payment arrangements can be made at the Ontvanger. In that case collection interest is taxable.

18. Can I pay in euros or in guilders?

No, the assessment is paid in USD.

19. I do not agree with the height of the determined value.

Objection
You can object to the value decree. You should then submit a notice of objection to Belastingdienst/Caribisch Nederland within 2 months of the date on the value decree. In your letter you should indicate the reason for your objection. You should also mention in your letter the month/year and the assessment number which are printed on the assessment. You can only object to the established value within these two months. After this period you can no longer object to the value which is used as basis for the assessment vastgoedbelasting.

Postponement of the payment
If you submit a notice of objection, you can request postponement of payment at the Ontvanger of the Belastingdienst/Caribisch Nederland. At the Ontvanger van Belastingdienst/Caribisch Nederland you can inform which conditions you should comply with and in which way you should submit your request.

20. My corporation does not have immovable goods, and yet I have received a value decree.

You can submit an objection, see question # 19.

21. I do not have an apartment that is rented out or an apartment as a second home and yet I have received a value decree.

You can submit an objection, see question # 19.

22. I do not have a second home, and yet I have received a value decree.

You can submit an objection, see question # 19.

23. I have just sold my house/corporation/apartment.

Vastgoedbelasting is taxable by the person who on the 1st of January was owner of the immovable good. A sale later during the year is not relevant for the taxable vastgoedbelasting. However the seller can deduct the remaining vastgoedbelasting for that year from the buyer of the immovable good. For this the seller and buyer should make mutual agreements themselves.

24. I do not rent the apartment out or not that often.

Whether you rent out the apartment or house often or rarely, is not determining for the vastgoedbelasting. The return is fictionally set at 4% of the value of the immovable good, regardless of the real incomes.

25. I am barely in my second home.

See question # 24

26. I do not have any activities in my building.

See question # 24

27. What is understood by undeveloped grounds?

Uncultivated land is land on which nothing has been constructed. As long as the value of the uncultivated ground accounts for minimal 90% of the total value of the immovable good, the complete immovable good will be exempted from vastgoedbelasting. As long as the value of the building accounts for less than 10% of the total value of the immovable good, the exemption can be used. This exemption is only applicable for the inhabitants of the Dutch Caribbean.

28. What is the link with the inkomstenbelasting?

Until the tax year 2010 as a private person you should have declared rent income you enjoyed from (other) immovable goods for the inkomstenbelasting. As of the tax year 2011 this is no longer applicable. Instead vastgoedbelasting is levied.

29. On Bonaire there is a surtax. What does that mean?

The Public Entity can charge surtax on the vastgoedbelasting. Bonaire has settled this surtax for 2011 at 15% of the amount of vastgoedbelasting (VGB). On Saba and Sint-Eustatius no surtax is levied.

30. Which changes were made in the law?

The payable vastgoedbelasting isfor hotels 0,4% of the value of the immovable good and 0,8% of the value for other immovable goods.  The first USD 50.000 of the value of the second homes of private persons is exempted of vastgoedbelasting. For the years 2011 and 2012 a temporary deduction of 0,2% applies. This because the assessment of 2011 is levied together with the assessment of 2012. The VGB due for 2011 and 2012 will be as follows:


Explanation:

Suppose you own an immovable good with the value of USD 200.000 . For the years 2011 and 2012 you pay 0,6% vastgoedbelasting (= USD 1.200) here over for - if it concerns a hotel - 0,2% (= USD 400). As of 2013 you will pay 0,8% vastgoedbelasting (= USD 1.600) each year or - if it concerns a hotel - 0,4% (= USD 800). If it concerns a second home with a private person as the owner, the first USD 50.000 of the value will be exempted. In this example USD 150.000 would then be charged. Over the years 2011 and 2012 USD 900 (0.6% of USD 150,000) would have to be paid and as of 2013
USD 1.200 (0.8% of 150,000) each year.

31. According to me, the street name and/or house number are not correct, the value and the cadastral designation of the object are correct. Should I make an objection?

If the street name or house number on the decree are not the same as the street name or house number as known by you, you do not have to make an objection. If you are not liable for paying Vastgoedbelasting or the value or cadastral designation is not correct, you should make an objection.


Explanation:

The street name and house number stated on the decree is according to the new island itinerary, which will be introduced in 2013. Due to this change some streets will have a different name and/or house numbers will be changed.

end faq