Land Registry Reform, Ghost and Illegal Properties: The Settlement | Milena Gabanelli

A normal country must know the real picture of all the real estate assets that exist in its territory, and the exact intended use of the land. It is called updating the cadastre it serves to classify and determine the values ​​on the basis of which property taxes are paid: Imu, registration tax on purchases from a private individual, inheritance and donation tax, as well as contributions to the calculation of Iseen for those who apply for public contributions and grants. So why have all the parties been fighting for decades over such a predictable issue? Because changing the value of a single property also means changing the amount of taxes that its owner will ultimately have to pay.

(…) changing the value of a single property also means changing the amount of taxes that its owner will ultimately have to pay.

30 years of emptiness

The National Land Registry attributes to each propertybased on its properties, an annuity. The core values ​​were last defined in 1989, in anticipation of the arrival of ICI, it is clear that figures written over thirty years ago have no bearing on current market values, also because the system is based on a subdivision of the territory, especially in large cities, completely inconsistent. For residential properties, there is an additional problem: the surface is not measured in square meters as in commercial practice, but in cadastral spaces of variable size. The homes are divided into categories and classes, which still reflect the situation when the rent was awarded without taking into account any improvements that have occurred over time. Suffice it to say that 3.5 million residential buildings that still existed were built before 1940, and most of them underwent major remodeling work.

Ghost and illegal houses

What does the reform envisage? Three things: the first identify phantom properties. The last general survey was conducted in late 2011 and indicated over two million parts of the land (plots) that were not reflected in the databases, and over 1.1 million cases also presented buildings to be stacked. Some were remedied by adding an additional income of 356 million a year to the tax fund, yet the latest available edition of the cadastral statistics (2021) of the Revenue refers to 1.2 million ghost properties. Also because the illegal activity on new buildings has not stopped in the meantime: according to the SDGS report (Sustainable Development Goals) prepared by Istat in 2020 about 100 new houses, the illegal ones are 6.1 in the north, 17.8 in the center, 45, 6 in the south. In the national average, they represent 17.7%. Not to mention the building plot, which is classified as agricultural land. The new reconnaissance work will be carried out using aerial photographic surveys or even systems like google maps, but for the precise definition of characteristics of uncultivated land, cooperation with the Municipalities is necessary because it is an empty building or agricultural land depending on what the municipal city plans stipulate.

Ruins that have become luxury houses

The second aspect of the reform reclassify immediately and with the applicable rules the properties that have changed their characteristics. In recent years, operations have already been carried out in the historic centers of some cities, especially in Rome and Milan, but much can be done by simply resorting to the data that the Revenue has at home. Those who carry out renovations and ask for concessions provide the tax authorities with all the useful information so that they can reclassify the property. Clearly, whoever is doing the work of Superbonus (fully paid for by the state) will see the house move into a higher tax framework. Even those who own prestigious properties but are not classified in one of the three cadastral categories (A / 1, A / 8 and A / 9) that are considered luxury will have to take a leap in class. For example, the ruin, which in the last 30 years has become a villa with a swimming pool. Today, there are only 70,000 luxury properties, 0.2% of the total, a percentage that is not very credible. Having a prestigious home means paying Imu, even if it is the first home, and when buying a 9% tax instead of 2.

The emergence of non-stacked houses, of those who, although registered, do not pay their culprits, and the reclassification of the properties at present will provide new revenue to the treasury and to the municipal treasury. Today, the property tax is estimated at 41 billion euros. The promise that where it arises more submerged, society will benefit from a tax cut, especially the IMU, which is decided at the local level. If the Municipality picks up more, it lowers the tariff for everyone.

The clash of market value

The third aspect of the reform, which is contained in paragraph 2 of Article 6 of the Law on the Empowerment of Tax Reform, concerns updating annuities to real values. In these three decades, there are neighborhoods that have deteriorated and others that have evolved instead because, for example, the subway line has arrived. This means that some properties have lost value and others have increased it. But how are the values ​​calculated? By identifying the values ​​of the areas into which the urban areas are divided, taking into account the statistics on the property values ​​of all the Italian municipalities, which are published by the tax authorities every six months, and whether the processing of data is obtained from the deeds. This will allow you to get the true picture of the situation, but will not affect taxes, because it gives the reform already until 2026 we will continue to pay on the basis of the old annuities, later we will see. If the purpose of this whole political struggle was to make the words market value disappear from the text of the law, a change, but of little substance.

If you look inside the cities, you discover that things change between the center and the periphery. In Milan, for example, another home in Piazza Libia, which today for income data is worth an average of 388,000 euros, with a tax value of 244,000. By applying the tax rate to the market value, the IMU would cost 1,550 euros more; in Quarto Oggiaro, on the other hand, those who bought a house about ten years ago have a cadastral income that is higher than the market value and would save 330 euros. In Turin: in central Via Po, a house worth 183,000 euros today for the tax authorities and 213,000 euros for the market would pay 342 euros more, by the Lingotto owner of a semi-new house worth 155,000 euros for the market and 174 thousand for the tax, would save 216 euros.

What changes?

On balance for those who only own a first non-luxury home (there are 19.5 million) nothing changes because he did not pay IMU before and does not pay it now. For owners of holiday homes and commercial properties, everything is unchanged until 2026. Therefore, those who should pay less will not save a penny, who should pay more because they have another home or a shop on Brera or Piazza Navona will not pay an extra euro. Basically, not only is Europe asking us to adjust annuities on the basis of real values, but also common sense. How much to take for a political decision. In France, the tax is taxable at 50% of the rental value registered in the land register, and it is updated every two years. In Spain, the situation is similar to ours, with cadastral values ​​not always up to date. In the UK, tax is paid on the market value at the time of calculation. In Germany, the taxable value depends on a complete X-ray of the property, including the rent available. The new criterion, based on data from 1 January this year, will enter into force in 2025.

May 9, 2022 | 07:17


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