Land Tax Assessments in Australia: A Comprehensive Guide

In Australia, Land Tax Assessments play a crucial role in determining the financial responsibilities of property owners. It is essential to understand the different methods of assessment associated with Land Tax Assessments in each state of Australia.

Understanding Land Tax Assessments in Australia

The Land Tax Assessments process revolves around the Valuer General’s determination of land values every year. This valuation assumes the land is vacant and reflects its highest and best use permitted. The Land Tax Assessment notice spans three consecutive years of land values: 2022, 2023, and 2024. The average of these values calculates the Land Tax Taxable Value.

Utilising the mass valuation approach, which involves grouping homogeneous properties together into a component with primary and reference benchmarks selected within each component, which represent typical property types., every state aims to ensure an efficient and fair evaluation of land assets. If you own more than one allotment, your land holdings will be aggregated, adding up the valuations before calculating land tax. However, if you own multiple allotments in different capacities, they will be assessed separately.

Property owners have a 60-day window from the issued notice to lodge a Land Tax Objection to the Valuer General for potential amendments.

New South Wales (NSW)

In New South Wales (NSW), the Valuer General NSW employs a thorough methodology, encompassing an evaluation of the highest and best use permitted for vacant land. In the case of properties with existing uses, adjustments are meticulously applied to accurately represent their current utilisation. These valuations are conducted on an annual basis and are effective as of the 1st of July of the preceding year.

For the Land Tax Assessments of 2024, the valuations utilised were Land Values established on the 1st of July 2023. This ensures that the assessments are based on the most recent and relevant property values for the specified period.

Victoria (VIC)

Victorian (VIC) Land Tax is an annual tax based on the total taxable value of all the land owned in Victoria, excluding exempt land such as the owner’s home (principal place of residence).

Land tax in Victoria is calculated using the site values (determined by the Valuer General Victoria) of all taxable land owned as at midnight on 31 December of the year preceding the year of assessment.

Site Value is the unimproved value of your land, which means it excludes capital improvements such as buildings. Site values are determined as part of the annual state-wide general valuation process conducted by the Valuer General Victoria.

These valuations are made annually as of 1 January of the previous calendar year. For 2024 Land Tax Assessments, we are using valuations made on 1 January 2023.

Property owners may have to pay land tax if they own, either individually or jointly with others:

•              investment properties, including residential rental properties;

•              commercial properties such as retail shops, office premises and factories;

•              holiday homes;

•              vacant land.

COVID Debt Repayment Plan

As part of the 2023-24 State Budget, the Victorian Government introduced a COVID Debt Repayment Plan.

This included the following temporary changes to land tax which is legislated to apply until 30 June 2033:

Accordingly, from the 2024 land tax year, there has been a change to land tax rates and thresholds, for the total taxable value (site value) of landholdings:

•              Between $50,000 and $100,000, a $500 flat surcharge will apply.

•              Between $100,000 and $300,000 (or $250,000 for trusts), a $975 flat surcharge will apply.

•              Over $300,000 (or $250,000 for trusts), a $975 flat surcharge will apply plus an increased rate of land tax by 0.10 percentage points.

Land tax does not apply to exempt land such as:

•              The owner’s home, known as the principal place of residence (PPR)

•              The owner’s farm, known as primary production land (PPL)

•              rooming houses and charitable institutions.

Queensland (QLD)

Queensland (QLD) Valuation notices will be issued by 31 March 2024 in the local government areas that are included in the 2024 program. The valuations will reflect land values as at 1 October 2023, and are effective from 30 June 2024.

There would be an expectation of a bit of a mixed bag in Southeast Queensland (SEQ) with some segments still performing well and others becalmed.

Only 20 areas are getting a comprehensive revaluation this time, potentially leading to anomalies between council areas or even asset classes. Brisbane, Ipswich, and Logan have missed out this year, but Redlands, Gold Coast, and Sunshine Coast are to be issued.

Valuation notices will be issued by 31 March 2024 in the local government areas that are included in the 2024 program.

•              Banana

•              Barcoo

•              Bulloo

•              Bundaberg

•              Central Highlands

•              Cook

•              Diamantina

•              Fraser Coast

•              Gold Coast

•              Goondiwindi

•              Isaac

•              Livingstone

•              Longreach

•              Moreton Bay

•              Redland

•              Somerset

•              Sunshine Coast

•              Torres

•              Whitsunday

•              Winton

Western Australia (WA)

In Western Australia (WA), the Valuer General assesses the Unimproved Land Value, assuming the land is vacant, employing a valuation process similar to other states.

The Licensed Valuers at Civic MJD Australia – WA, undertake numerous Valuations for the objection of the assessed Unimproved Value which is the basis for Land Tax assessments in Western Australia. If, following our valuation investigation it is decided a Land Tax Assessment Objection is warranted, our Licensed Valuers can submit the prescribed objection form as your “Agent” and liaise with the Valuer Generals Office throughout the objection process.

Land Tax is an annual tax, based on a rate in the dollar of the Unimproved Value of the land, assessed by the Valuer Generals Office at Landgate. Under the Valuation of Land Act 1978, “Any person liable to pay any rate or tax assessed in respect of land who is dissatisfied with a valuation of such land made under this Act, may serve upon the Valuer-General a written objection to the valuation.”

Impact on Land Owners

Rising land tax in this market diminishes the overall return from property. The property market in recent years has seen reduced activity due to an increase in interest rates this lowering the demand for properties.

CivicMJD: Your Ally in Land Tax Assessment Matters

For property owners navigating the complexities of Land Tax Assessments, the valuers at CivicMJD Australia can provide you with specialist valuation advice and assist with your Land Tax Objection process. Specialising in government valuations, CivicMJD Australia offers expert valuation advice on potential Land Tax Objections and amendments.

Please contact the specialist valuers at Civic MJD Australia at for a personalised quote, ensuring a fair and accurate valuation of your property.