I wrote earlier today about how we could look at changing ratings to possibly be more heavily based on land value ratings. This evening i just want to look quickly at the way council defines what kind of rate someone will pay. In short there are two kinds - residential rates and business rates. From what I understand, business ratepayers pay more than residential ratepayers, by quite a bit.
So far, so easy. Seems pretty straightforward right? Well yes, but I guess there is one category of ratepayer who could be considered either. That’s the residential landlord. Is a house someone owns for the purpose of renting a residential or business property? It’s clearly both. At the moment, I’m pretty sure that for rating purposes it’s classified residential.
But could it also be classified business couldn't it? I wouldn't quibble with that as a definition. Is there a lawyer out there somewhere who knows? That classification would have quite a significant impact on the business model of landlords and the availability of cheaper first homes. I’d love to know what the answer is.