How Many Properties are Liable for the Household Charge ?

How many properties are liable for the  Household Charge
(Updated Nov 2012  )

The exact number of properties liable for the Household Charge is not really known by anyone . Any figure given can only be an estimate. The Chief Executive of the Local Government Management Agency stated that he didn’t know how many properties are liable . The government have always stuck to a figure of 1.6 million properties – but they were probably based on Census 2006 data.

According to the Census 2011 figures – there were 1,994,845  dwellings in Ireland in May 2011.  (Of those – 334,374 were vacant.)
Vacant houses are not exempt – but it is possible that some of these vacant dwellings may be exempt because they form part of the trading stock of a business and they have never being lived in.  The exact figure for exempt vacant properties is not known – but according to the 2011 Housing Development Survey there were 18368 vacant dwellings that had never been lived in. That survey looked at all unfinished developments of two or more dwellings –  so there could be some single property developments not included in this number.  Aslo some of the 18368 empty properties will have been sold since that survey – but using a figure of 18000 figure for exemptions  is probably a fair estimate .

All Local Authority owned housing is exempt – and that is about  126000 homes.
Also exempt are houses owned by approved non-profit housing bodies (housing associations and housing co-operatives) which is about  25,000 dwellings.

Homes bought under the local authority shared ownership scheme are also exempt . According to the Dept of Environment there are 16500 homes that were bought under this scheme since 1991. Some of those have probably been bought outright by now –  so for the sake of this calculation we will use a figure  of 15000

That brings the total estimated exempt properties to  174,000 and therefore the estimated liable properties close  to 1.82 million

There are also  about 18,000 homeowners on Mortgage Interest Supplement – who will  be given a waiver (but are still expected to register)

Houses on certain “unfinished estates”  are also  given a waiver . The list of unfinished estates is here and  there are 1325  estates involved.  Any habitable or inhabited houses on those estates will be exempt for a maximum of 2 years. The government  estimated the number of completed houses on unfinished estates in 2012 to be in the region of  34,000. So that’s about 52,000 properties with a waiver

So – in summary – there are an estimated  174,000 houses and apartments that are exempt from the Household Charge. That leaves an estimated  1.82 million properties that could be liable – with 52,000 of these eligible for a waiver in 2012 (but still supposed to register).

See the latest figures on how many people have registered for the Household Charge