Budget 2018 – What we Know So Far

This article is from 2017 – if you are looking for information on the latest Budget (2019) which will be announced in October 2018  – look here  – Budget 2019 Ireland

Budget 2018 is due to be announced on Tuesday October 10th 2017. This is a summary of what we think might happen.

Update :For details of exactly what happened in  Budget 2018 go Here

The 2018 Budget will be overseen by the new Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe , who was appointed in June.

The government estimate , back in Feb 2017 , of the net “fiscal space” available for Budget 2018 was  €1.2 billion. But , whilst Budget 2018 is expected to allow for at least a  €1.2 billion “adjustment ” , the real room for manoeuvre could be as little as €300 million because of the carry over effects of some measures from Budget 2017.

In a speech on June 28th , Taoiseach Leo Varadkar pointed out that there is a  need to review existing spending programmes and if just 1% or 2% of the  €53 billion state expenditure could be re-allocated we would have another billion to use.  He called this the  hidden ‘fiscal space’.

What can we expect to be announced  in Budget 2018 ?

It’s getting closer   and here is our list of some of the possibilites for Budget 2018

USC reductions – with possible balancing income tax increases for higher earners.   There could be the start of kind of  merger of the USC and pay-related social insurance (PRSI)  – which might mean more people paying PRSI but less paying USC.

USC for over 70’s – a decision will need to be made about the current reduced rate of USC . It will either be extended past it’s current end date of 2017 or allowed to end.

Income Tax – Currently, PAYE workers pay the higher rate of 40% when their earnings reach €33,800.  There is the possibility of this threshold being increased.  An increase to €34,800 would cost €178m.
Reducing the 20% standard income tax  rate to 19%  might also be an option – this is estimated to cost about  €580 million.

Income tax bands have not changed since 2015 – so theory could be increased which would mean cuts in Income Tax .

Inheritance Tax – the threshold  of €310,000 will be increased again for parent – child inheritances towards the promised target of €500k.

Medical Cards :  Health Minister Simon Harris has hinted at a widening of the eligibility for medical cards – or at least GP visit cards. This might involve a raising of the income thresholds.

Further income tax reductions for the self employed by increasing the “Earned Income Credit” by at least €350.

Mortgage Interest Relief – we expect to hear details of how this will be extended for current recipients beyond the current 2017 end date.

Diesel : There might be a start to a phased  increase on the excise duty  on Diesel to gradually bring it in line with petrol . This could increase the price by as much as 3c a litre in 2018.

A 2% cut to DIRT  – (as promised in Budget 2017)

Sugar Tax details are expected to be announced for the sugar tax to probably begin in  April 2018

Tobacco – excise duty will probably be increased again in Budget 2018

Duty on alcohol has not risen for a few years – so maybe 2018 is the year it will go up?

Corporation Tax – No change from the current 12.5%

School Transport – possible changes to bus fares .

Welfare and Pensions
There will probably be small increases to pensions and benefits across the board. Maybe as much as €5 a week . Any increases will probably not take effect from January 2018  – but could kick in from March or April or even later in the year.
A restoration  of the telephone allowance is also a possibility .

The Welfare and Pensions Christmas Bonus will probably be retained at 85% – or more.

A new Working Family Payment was promised back in 2016 – so we finally expect to hear some details about this in Budget 2108

Land tax on vacant sites could be introduced to encourage house building.

Incentives for landlords – such as restoring the 100% mortgage interest deductibility  or simplifying tax rules on rental properties.

Possible Tax Incentives to encourage the building of affordable housing.

VAT – the IMF have suggested increasing VAT on items that are currently lower rated for VAT. Retailers are asking for a cut of 3% to the standard VAT rate. Maybe we will get both?

Property Tax – this could be increased ; it has remained the same since it’s introduction. (The IMF have suggested it could be increased). The planned revaluation date is 2019 .

VRT relief on electric cars – the €5000 cap on VAT relief might be increased or even removed .

Student Loans – this has been on the back burner for a couple of years. Maybe 2018 is the year it begins?

Updated October 9th

We will keep this page updated with any Budget 2018 related news as we hear about it. See here for a Summary of Budget 2018

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40 thoughts on “Budget 2018 – What we Know So Far

  1. (Comment edited to remover personal deails)

    We badly need a rent to buy scheme or affordable housing scheme and I work with the Homelessness Voluntary and you need to do both not just 1 that will bring argument on both side of the coin.

    Also I think work experience like what I do should get increase in the money if you are doing this type of thing and maybe get people into work experience placement that most important that they like and capable of doing and help them into a job from the work experience if possible.

    Welfare should be risen because of the cost of things

    My name is **** and my partner is **** and we are in a difficult situation which is if Paul parents dies in the morning even do he is in full – time employment he will be left without a home due to rent increase and also we did rent together and we would now like to get a mortgage to live together permanently.

    The second problem is that he is been refused in the banks because I am in the National Learning Network in a course called career path old name fast – track where I am sitting exams and doing work experience in Retail to help me get a job and put my life together and I am doing well but I have till April 2018 to complete it and I have a job coach who help me with my decision and support me.

    The reason why I am in Roslyn is due to Epilepsy and I have had no seizure in 6 years but I did take turns in the passed so I was let go from jobs and there is still a sigma against epileptic in Ireland.

    I am tired telling the bank because all they ever say she not working both people have to be working I find this a form of discrimination because it should not matter if I am on welfare and if he is in full time – employment we are never trusted.

    Kinds Regards

  2. they should bring back the moability allowance transport grants for older people and people with disability they are lost with out it i have a disability i need to update my car every now again too if i was working with the goverment i bring them back for good from stephen in galway

  3. Children who leave primary school and are under age of 16 are not allowed or entitle to any dental treatment on medical card. Why? I am from Drogheda and rang louth dental hse section in dundalk and i was told my 14 year okd wasnt eligable for any treatment. Why do we have to wait until damage is irreparable? Surely its a human right. She needs fillings and a root canal treatment and if its not carried out she will have to get them out. Its a disgrace

    • Free Dental Care is not a human right!! Jaysus guys we need to get a grip and take some personal responsibility!! Its not upto the government/exchequer to pay for all of this stuff for us! i need loads of simular dental work, its not done coz i cant afford it! Thats not the governments/Tax payers fault, and its certainly not their fault that i didnt mind my teeth well enough before they got to this stage!

  4. I think the bin weight charges are probably the way it should be done in a perfect world but in the real world it is going to lead to fly dumping.
    The bin charges should be incorporated into the household charge.
    That way everyone would have a bin and everyone would be contributing towards the costs of waste disposal. Weight the bins and offer people a discount based on that.
    The collection of the bins should then be put up for tender for different localities, stopping two or more bin trucks visiting the same village/areas – thus cutting down on pollution from heavy vehicles.

  5. Theyvshould cone up with sonething for those who can prove they have paid rent and not missed a payment to get a mortgage even if only one is working. The mortgage per month is less than current rent in our case yet we are not eligible for a mortgage as they take rent payment as an expense. I am not on social welfare yet we manage, my husband is in full time employment. According to the bank we’d have to have €2000 a month left on the account to be eligible. If I had that much left over I wouldn’t need a mortgage!

    • I agree with you. It’s a joke when your rent is higher than mortgage and banks refused a mortgage…..Where is a logic ??????So many people could get the houseslong time ago and not pay this stupid rent. …..I think government is interesting in this

    • I had to leave my career to care for my son who has cerebral palsy, is profoundly deaf, has limited vision, has profound speech and language difficulties, has a moderate intellectual disability among other issues. I care for him 24/7 365 days a year and will do till the day I die. I don’t get any respite. Carers save the state billions every year and yet we are classed as scroungers!! I hope disability never knocks on your door

  6. Any suggestion of CGT cuts for sales of houses to encourage sales of vacant properties?

  7. Dear Arnold Devine,
    You must be living in a dream world, there isn’t an adult or child in this country who doesn’t contribute to the exchequer.
    To make my point check out the VAT Rate on sweets and Ice cream for starters and the taxes that KIDS are paying on their way home from school. Welfare or not we are all paying VAT, Waste, Property Tax and the list goes on and on and on………………Wake up Kiddo open your eyes. I hope you never have to try to survive on some of the welfare payments in this country.

    • Jim Horgan,

      That’s a silly argument I see all the time, if you’re on welfare your money comes from the state, (If youre a child all your money comes from your parents) either way there is only one way to make money and that’s to work.

      If the working population of Ireland give 2bn to those on social welfare and then the social welfare recipients pay 100million of that back to the exchequer in taxes its very misleading to say that people on social welfare have paid 100m in tax.

      It would be fairer to say that they’ve contributed nothing and they just take.

      Its more accurate to say that they’ve gotten 1.9bn from the state.

      • For a start, the state still operates as in old times when only 1 parent (mostly the man of the house) was going to work to provide for the family while the other parent cared for the house and children. Even today, once you become parents, unless you can afford scandalous childcare charges, one of the parents eventually ends up at home to mind the kids, running around school runs. Part time education is a real issue, pre schools finish around 12:30pm, Junior/seniors at 1:30pm, primary at 2:30pm, and then secondary……Where is one to find that dream job in between those hours, worst for those outside Dublin (the outside world); top that if you’re separated and become a one parent family. Yes, you used to work and pay your taxes like everyone but suddenly you need support. Going back to work would be fantastic but right now, there are those school runs, illnesses, holiday weeks every 5-6weeks and summer holidays…. where can you find that dream job where you can finally repay society and start paying your way again? Not every single parent has families or friends close by to help. I’m in that situation, not by choice, shit happens and I’m grateful for the state to offer me some support and I pray that when I’m finally able to return to work that employers won’t turn their back on me now because of my extra responsibilities and because I lost those few work experience years. I could still need more help with my mortgage for example but because I’m not renting, I don’t get support there. Fair? But, no, being unemployed is not always by choice or laziness. Thank your lucky star that you are able to provide for yourself, I wish I could, it’s humiliating. But remember it could happen to you and then you will be glad there are people like you who contributes so that you can survive. This is what society is about. One for all and all for one, not all for themselves.

    • Sorry I am wide awake the social welfare recepiepts can afford holidays new cars medical card their children receive transport waivers for school buses the list is endless everyone pays vat but they don’t have to pay tax usc prsi the working poor pay for it the pension time bomb is upon us the work force can’t keep the dole going over

  8. My Bin Collection Company (Ryan Brothers, Thurles) has been sending me a bill for government imposed Landfill Levy. I am paying a tag charge for each collection (5euro for recycling and 10euro for waste). The tag charge was the original deal and I am honoring this, but I am ignoring and refusing to pay the Landfill Levy. Please let me know if it is a legal charge on a pensioner living alone.

  9. What about childcare? Are they gonna increase or no? It’s not enough 140 euro pet month to pay 1000 for creche…..😣😣😣it’s a shame to Ireland….

    • I’m sorry, did nobody tell you having children costs money? There are far more important issues to be addressed by the government. And yes, I understand the contribution you make by working and paying tax, but your kids are your responsibility. If you cant afford them, don’t have them. They are a choice, not a right.

      • You are not human…. The government thinks more about lazy animals sitting years at home probably like you and receiving help from government …..
        Kids its our and country future and they have to think about them as well….n

  10. Hi will the HTB scheme change in budget 2018?
    If changes are made when would they come into effect?

  11. What about the senior citizens upper earning limit of €38,000 which was dispensed with and now seem conveniently forgotten?

  12. Read some of above comments regarding social welfare payments and unemployment rates with interest , sorry but you don’t realise how fortunate some of you people are, Xmas bonus,fuel allowance ect, I used to live in the UK, worked all my life was diagnose with cancer in 2010, unable to work, (was a bricklayer heavy manual labor) from having a decent working wage I was reduced to £90 a week yes £90 a week sickness benefit for me and my wife to live on or should I say survive on. no Xmas bonus or fuel allowance pleas count your blessings

  13. People on welfare who want to attend interviews in uk with view to gaining long-term successful employment should be assisted to so do by the Irish government

    • If you’re that fed up, get a short term job (which there are plenty – bars, shops, data entry etc), work for a month, you’ll at least earn double the welfare payments. This money can then be used to travel for said interviews and also be beneficial for your CV. I don’t think the government should be responsible for funding people to find jobs in other countries. It would more than likely end up being abused and the new way of people to go on a holiday under the guise of having an “interview”. Not saying that’s what you’re going to do or anything but absolutely everything gets abused in relation to welfare. Be somewhat counter productive as well, using tax payers money to send a potential tax payer out of the country, where they will go on to pay taxes elsewhere. Yes, it would remove them for the welfare payments so it would possibly be less expensive in the long run, if the person was a long term recipient of welfare payments. I can understand your frustration in finding permanent full time work in this country, I was 9 months after I got graduated finding one. However I was easily able to find short term contracts while I waited. Best of luck with it anyway.

      • @jason absolutely NOT going on holiday i have the email comma to prove i have legit interviews and believe me uk would NOT be my hols destination especially this time of the year
        I prefer sunny climates with warmth florida or new york
        I have tried locally for work and got knock backs so uk while it’s open i am going over i have previously been employed in ireland and i have to say initially thought i would be content long term secure but things change

        Uk is also where my boyfriend of almost ten years is and before people judge me i don’t smoke use drugs i don’t drink in pubs and any drinking of alcohol is very small and infrequently
        i don’t have a social life and my only real escape is youtube ón my phone or all4 app or even atc app

  14. I would like to see an tax allowance given to workers who have to pay very high deposits and rent to secure accommodation. They are not entitled to claim anything if they were not renting before 2011. Rent allowances given to unemployed people come from the income tax of workers who are struggling to stay in accommodation themselves. They get no concessions on rent and enter the high rate of tax allowances at €34000 -a minimum wage for someone living in a city.

  15. We need rent to buy scheme, paying dead money in terms of rent which has no use. Need to think about the families with children specially in current situation where rent increase it highest percentage, next year will be worst and so on. If this situation is not taken care on time we will end up on social welfare if anything happen on working hours. this is the time when most family members are on job and situation gets worst in case or losing job.

    • The government has to do something with rent. It not human. I have to give all my salary for a rent…. If it will continue to grow up prices on a rent we will all stay on a street and will be homeless .Why Ireland has the highest prices on a rent in Europe????

  16. Legalize abortion in this country seriously.
    Kids are the future of the country => Agreed but having kids young is a pure stupidity. We are 2017, nearly 2018. The cost of living is not the same as it was 30~50 years ago. Having children has a cost. It has been roughly estimated to almost half a million by the time they reach 25 years old. And that’s just for your kid, count yourself and your partner needs and leisures, housing, transport or car etc … Yes you got it. If you get kids these days before 32~35 you’re a complete idiot disconnected from the reality.
    Yes there are risks having them on the verge to 40’s but still if you stay healthy you can do it until that stage and at that stage, you should have worked your ass off with your partner, develop yourself, had several investments because money from jobs is no longer enough, push your studies or certifications or whatsoever so you get the best job in the best company as possible. By that time you a lot of resources money either saved or available from different sources that’s when you can estimate yourself ready for having kids.

    We are always better served by ourselves. Why counting on states etc… Man retirement plan and pension may disappear anytime soon, why the fuck would you take silly decision to have kids too early? Enjoying facepalm yourself ?
    What people said before about that, they are not inhuman, they are realistic. They don’t fucking stand in front of TV doing nothing productive. They work, they research, they think, they try to not rely on any benefits from States or whatsoever, they work hard towards some goals, projects. That’s what everybody these days MUST do.

    Kids are important but they have a cost to not take very lightly. Once you have them you will be slowed down to your own progress because it’s another extra full time job and it costs a lot as well. It’s cool to have the mindset ready for parenting but it’s completely retarded to think that it is ok to have them early and by coping with it, everything will get sorted. That’s a huge lie. You will screw yourself even more because you were entirely prepared for it.

    Patience is a virtue.

    Regarding rent I do agree, this is ridiculous and there are still tons of abandoned house. Government should consider to remove some cost and fees such as construction permit if someone buy a land. That doesn’t make sense that someone has to pay for building permit or work permit when they paid for owning a land. They should be able to do whatever the ###k they want once they bought it.

    Government should also stop to help landlord to do works on their property to modernist them because at the end the landlords just increase the price even higher.

    The rental costs are ridiculously high and the ratio quality/price is one of the worst in Europe easy. Architects there I don’t where they got their diploma but encased building in bedroom and other rooms is has been and set up limitation and locks up completely creativity and re-usability. That’s also another problem.

    Why people would spend 250k for dumps that are not even half of it ? Just because of the location? No I’m sorry but Irish government must set up a high standard for any kind of accommodation and a price range with penalties system if that’s not right.

    Even the detached house, when you look at them, half a million sometimes even more, but please there are very few of them that did even cost something close to 80k. Greed has to be reduced for the housing. The more new owners and the bigger diversity of owners we’ll have in the country the better the whole economy will be.

    • Is there a incerese of the living alone allawance or is that just phone allawance and fuel allawance

  17. increasing diesel only leads to higher transport costs so goods prices increase bus and train fares increase its a no brainer better to give a rebate to haulage and bus firms to offset the increase

  18. I am in disability allowance and I am doing Social Studies in Moate Business College and I applied for back to education to help me with petrol and until today I never get it and the social wrote to me saying I am qualifying for BTE Can you give me more information of what to do or when are they giving,

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