IMI Municipal Property Tax: nearly half of Portuguese residents will pay less in 2021

84 out of 308 municipalities in Portugal have reduced the IMI fees to be collected from owners. In Lisbon it remains at 0.3% and in Porto at 0.324%.

IMI in Portugal in 2021
IMI in Portugal in 2021 / Pixabay
1 February 2021, Redaction

84 municipalities in Portugal have decided to reduce Municipal Property Tax (IMI) rates for homeowners in 2021, in respect of the properties they owned on 31st December 2020. This means that almost half of residents in Portugal (47.7% of the resident population) will pay less IMI in 2021 as some of the municipalities concerned are among the most populous in the country. On average, each homeowner paid 183 euros of IMI in 2020, which was imposed for the properties owned in 2019.

According to a publication in Jornal de Negócios, in 2021 more than half of Portugal's councils, 179 out of a total of 308, have decided to apply the minimum IMI rate (0.3%). Among the 10 municipalities with the highest number of residents, only Lisbon and Porto have not lowered their IMI rate: in the capital the minimum rate is already in force, while in Porto the value remains at 0.324%. In Sintra, Loures, Cascais, Amadora and Oeiras, in the Lisbon Metropolitan Area, and Vila Nova de Gaia, Matosinhos, Guimarães, Maia and Santa Maria da Feira, in the north of the country, the IMI rate will fall, according to the publication, adding that there are also fewer and fewer council areas that apply the maximum IMI rate of 0.45%.

It should be remembered that the IMI rate to be applied in each municipality is decided by the respective local council executives, as this is the municipalities' own revenue. As stated on Portal das Finanças, the Portuguese Tax and Customs Authority website, where the IMI rate charged in the various municipalities in the country can be consulted, the rates are between 0.3% and 0.45% for urban properties - they can go up to 0.5% in "specific circumstances" - while for rural properties it is 0.8%.

When it comes to "IMI familiar", which allows a discount of 20, 40 and 70 euros depending on the number of children, 1, 2 and 3 or more respectively, there are also more "participating" residents, increasing from 229 to 241.

Property owners in Portugal pay an average of 183 euros of IMI

According to calculations published in Jornal de Negócios, of the almost 1.528 billion euros corresponding to the 2019 IMI collection, 1.52 billion euros was paid by the owners of the urban properties, at an average of 183 euros per year per owner. The remaining 7.8 million euros, the equivalent of 0.5% of the tax collected, corresponds to the IMI of rural properties. Note that IMI payments in Portugal begin in May. 

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