COVID-19 Relief

Land tax relief for landlords

Land tax relief is available for eligible non-residential and residential landlords and eligible commercial owner-occupiers in response to COVID-19.

The relief is available for residential and non-residential landlords over two periods.

The initial period of land tax reduction was based on rent relief the landlord has provided to tenants impacted by COVID-19 or rent the landlord has forgone between 30 March 2020 and 30 October 2020 (Period 1).

Applications for relief for Period 1 closed on 30 September 2020.

The expanded land tax relief is based on rent relief the landlord has provided to tenants impacted by COVID-19 or rent the landlord has foregone between 31 October 2020 and 30 April 2021 (Period 2). Applications will open soon.

The land tax relief only applies if a reduction in rent was passed on to the tenant in the relevant period of at least the same amount as the land tax relief, or if the landlord lost rent because of an untenanted property over the relevant period. A land tax reduction of up to 25% of the 2019-20 land tax payable on that property is available in each period, with a maximum total reduction of up to 50% of the 2019-20 land tax payable on that property.

Eligible owner-occupiers of commercial property that actively operate a business from their premises during the period between 31 October and 30 April 2021 that has been adversely impacted by COVID-19 may be eligible for a reduction of up to 25% of the 2019-20 land tax payable on that property.

Land tax relief is available only where land is occupied by tenants impacted by COVID-19, eligible commercial owner-occupiers impacted by COVID-19 (31 October 2020 to 30 April 2021) or is vacant due to the impact of COVID-19. A separate application must be completed for each property in each period.

If you have paid your 2019-20 land tax in full, you can choose to receive your relief as a credit against a future land tax bill or to receive a refund.

This measure is in addition to the land tax instalment deferral measure.

Read more about land tax relief for landlords: non-residential.

Read more about land tax relief for landlords: residential.

Read more about land tax relief for commercial owner occupiers.

Media Releases:

Land Tax Relief for Landlords: Non-Residential

Who is eligible?

You may be eligible for relief if:

  • you have received a Land Tax Notice of Assessment for 2019-20
  • you do not have an outstanding land tax debt prior to 2019-20
  • the land you own is used for non-residential purposes
  • your property was leased at 30 March 2020 to a non-residential tenant(s).

and

  • at least one of the tenants is eligible for the Australian Government's JobKeeper payment in the relevant period.
  • the tenant(s) must not have had an annual turnover of more than $50 million during the 2018-2019 financial year.
  • you can demonstrate that you have provided, or will provide, rent relief ( reduction) to the tenant(s) impacted by COVID-19 in the relevant period. A deferral or postponement of rent is not rent relief.

or

  • the land was leased to a non-residential tenant or tenants at 30 March 2020 and at least one tenancy has been vacated since, and you have been unable to secure a tenant during the relevant period because of COVID-19

What are the relevant periods?

There are two stages to the land tax relief measure:

  • Period 1: 30 March 2020 to 30 October 2020
  • Period 2: 31 October 2020 to 30 April 2021

Each period is assessed separately. You need to meet all the criteria for the period to receive relief for that period. This includes that:

  • you have passed on the rent relief to your tenant during the period and that your tenant meets the criteria in the same period; or
  • if property is vacant, the rent is forgone for that period.

Separate applications are required for each property in each period.

The Australian Government JobKeeper extension affects JobKeeper payments from 28 September 2020. To claim land tax relief in Period 2, where you are a non-commercial landlord, land tax relief will be based on your tenants’ eligibility for the extended JobKeeper payment in either extension period 1 (28 September 2020 to 3 January 2021) or extension period 2 (4 January 2021 to 28 March 2021).

How much is the COVID-19 landlord land tax relief?

The maximum land tax relief available is 50% of the 2019-20 land tax liability of the relevant property. You may apply for relief of up to 25% in each period.

In Period 1 (between 30 March 2020 and 30 October 2020 inclusive)

You may receive the full amount of land tax relief if the rent relief you provided to your tenant (or forgone rent from a vacant tenancy), between 30 March 2020 and 30 October 2020, is equal to or more than 25% of the 2019-20 land tax for the relevant property.

You may receive a lower level of land tax relief which is equal to the value of the rent relief you provided your tenant if the rent relief you provided your tenant (or forgone rent from a vacant tenancy), between 30 March 2020 and 30 October 2020, is less than 25% of the 2019-20 land tax on that property.

In Period 2 (between 31 October 2020 and 30 April 2021 inclusive)

You may receive the full amount of land tax relief if the rent relief you provided to your tenant (or forgone rent from a vacant tenancy), between 31 October 2020 and 30 April 2021, is equal to or more than 25% of the 2019-20 land tax for the relevant property.

You may receive a lower level of land tax relief which is equal to the value of the rent relief you provided your tenant if the rent relief you provided your tenant (or forgone rent from a vacant tenancy), between 31 October 2020 and 30 April 2021, is less than 25% of the 2019-20 land tax on that property .

What evidence will I need to provide?

Specific requests for information that relates to your situation will display as you complete the form.

You will be required to provide evidence to support your claim. This could include, but is not limited to:

If your property is tenanted

  • The lease agreement or written evidence of the arrangement existing between you and your affected tenant(s) at 30 March 2020.
  • Evidence that at least one of your non-residential tenants is eligible for the JobKeeper payment within the relevant period.
  • Evidence that you will reduce, or have already reduced, the rent payable for the affected tenant or tenants, which indicates the value of relief you have provided.
  • Evidence the affected tenant(s) did not have had an annual turnover of more than $50 million during the 2018-2019 financial year.

If your property is not tenanted

  • The lease agreement or written evidence of the arrangement in place as at 30 March 2020.
  • The date when one of the tenancies within the property became available for rent.
  • A document to support your effort to lease the property, such as a copy of the property advertisement and rental amount (screenshot from online media or PDF), and/or the exclusive managing and leasing authority agreement with the real estate agent or property manager.
  • If you have not sought to secure another tenant(s), please provide an explanation why.
  • Evidence that the value of the rent forgone from the vacant tenancy over the relevant period.

How do I apply?

Applications for Period 1 closed on 30 September 2020.

Applications for Period 2 will open soon and close on 30 April 2021.

How is the relief provided?

If you haven’t fully paid your 2019-20 land tax liability

Relief will be provided as a credit against outstanding 2019-20 land tax for the relevant property.

If you have fully paid your 2019-20 land tax liability

You can request to have this as a credit towards your future land tax liability or as a refund

Please choose your option on the application form.

If you choose to receive the relief as a credit against future land tax, once approved you will see the amount of relief credited on your next land tax liability notice (your next bill).

If you choose a refund by EFT, this will be sent to the account details in the application form.

If you choose a refund by cheque, this will be mailed to the postal address we have on record for you.

I have given my tenant a once off rent reduction. Can I claim the full 25% land tax reduction for a period?

You are eligible for relief up to the amount you pass on to your tenant in the period, to a maximum of 25% of your 2019-20 land tax for that property.

For example: If you provided a once off rent reduction of $250 and your total land tax liability for that property is $2,000, you can only claim up to the amount of relief you provided, in this example $250, as it is less than 25% of the land tax liability (i.e. $500).

Can rent relief provided in Period 1 be used as evidence of rent relief in Period 2?

No. The 2 periods are separately assessed. Rent relief provided in one period does not apply when we assess your application for another period.

I have an outstanding land tax liability from a year prior to 2019-20. Can I apply?

No, to apply you must not have an outstanding land tax liability prior to 2019-20.

Any outstanding debts from before 2019-20 must be paid in full before you apply.

My tenant is not in financial hardship. What can I do?

The relief is only available to landlords who have provided rent relief to tenants who have been financially impacted by COVID-19.

‘Financially impacted’ for non-residential landlords is assessed based on the tenants’ eligibility for the Australian Government’s JobKeeper payment in the relevant period.

Can I receive my refund by EFT?

No, at this time the relief is provided as a credit to offset current 2019-20 liability, future land tax liability or refunded by cheque.

My business has been impacted by COVID-19 but I own the property. Can I claim the relief?

If you are an owner occupier of a commercial property carrying on an active business at the premises, see the Land tax relief for owner-occupier section below.

Part of the criteria includes that the business turnover must be less than $50 million. What is this based on?

The $50 million is based on the 2018-19 financial year Australia wide grouped business turnover.

If the tenant is a franchise, the $50 million is based on the 2018-19 business turnover for the franchise operator.

I own a shopping centre and have provided rent relief to some of my tenants. Can I claim the landlord land tax relief?

Landlords who provide tenants impacted by COVID-19 with rent relief may be eligible for a reduction up to 25% on the 2019-20 land tax for that land in each period.

Applications for Period 1 closed on 30 September 2020. Information about applying for relief for Period 2 and the application form will be available shortly.

To lodge your application, you need to provide:

  • evidence of the amount of rent relief you provided the affected tenant(s).
  • attach a schedule to your Application listing the tenancies, affected tenancies and rent relief details.
  • evidence of JobKeeper is only required from one tenancy relevant to your Application.

Other criteria are included on the Application form.

The maximum land tax relief available is 50% of the 2019-20 land tax liability of the relevant property. You may apply for relief of up to 25% in each period.

Do I need to be eligible for relief in Period 1 to get relief in Period 2?

No. Eligibility for relief in each period is separately assessed.


Land Tax Relief for Landlords: Residential

Who is eligible?

You may be eligible for relief if:

  • you have received a Land Tax Notice of Assessment for 2019-20
  • you do not have an outstanding land tax debt prior to 2019-20
  • the land you own is used for residential purposes

and

  • the land was leased to a residential tenant or tenants at 30 March 2020 and continues to be leased
  • within the relevant period you reduce, or have reduced, the rent for the tenant or tenants impacted by COVID-19
  • at least one of the residential tenants declare they are experiencing financial hardship due to COVID-19 (e.g. lost job, reduced working hours or on JobKeeper) during the relevant period

or

  • the land was leased to a residential tenant or tenants at 30 March 2020 and at least one tenancy has been vacated since, and you have been unable to secure a tenant during the relevant period because of COVID-19.

What are the relevant periods?

There are two stages to the land tax relief measure:

  • Period 1: 30 March 2020 to 30 October 2020
  • Period 2: 31 October 2020 to 30 April 2021

Each period is assessed separately. You need to meet all the criteria for the period to receive relief for that period.

This includes that:

  • you have passed on the rent relief to your tenant during the period and that your tenant meets the criteria in the same period; or
  • if property is vacant, the rent is forgone for that period.

Separate applications are required for each property in each period.

How much is the COVID-19 landlord land tax relief?

The maximum land tax relief available is 50% of the 2019-20 land tax liability of the relevant property. You may apply for relief of up to 25% in each period.

In Period 1 (between 30 March and 30 October 2020 inclusive)

You may receive the full amount of land tax relief if the rent relief you provided to your tenant (or forgone rent from a vacant tenancy), between 30 March 2020 and 30 October 2020, is equal to or more than 25% of the 2019-20 land tax for the relevant property.

You may receive a lower level of land tax relief which is equal to the value of the rent relief you provided your tenant if the rent relief you provided your tenant (or forgone rent from a vacant tenancy), between 30 March 2020 and 30 October 2020, is less than 25% of the 2019-20 land tax on that property.

In Period 2 (between 31 October 2020 and 30 April 2021 inclusive)

You may receive the full amount of land tax relief if the rent relief you provided to your tenant (or forgone rent from a vacant tenancy), between 31 October 2020 and 30 April 2021, is equal to or more than 25% of the 2019-20 land tax for the relevant property.

You may receive a lower level of land tax relief which is equal to the value of the rent relief you provided your tenant if the rent relief you provided your tenant (or forgone rent from a vacant tenancy), between 31 October 2020 and 30 April 2021, is less than 25% of the 2019-20 land tax on that property.

What evidence will I need to provide?

Specific requests for information that relates to your situation will display as you complete the form.

You will be required to provide evidence to support your claim. This could include, but is not limited to:

If your property is tenanted

  • The lease agreement or written evidence of the arrangement existing between you and your tenant at 30 March 2020.
  • A signed statement by the tenant and you (or your agent) to acknowledge the rent reduction has been provided to the tenant. A deferral of rent is not rent relief.
  • Evidence that you will reduce, or have already reduced, the rent payable for the affected tenant or tenants, which indicates the value of the relief you have provided.

If your property is not tenanted

  • The date when the property became available for rent.
  • A document to support your effort to lease the property, such as a copy of the property advertisement and rental amount (screenshot from online media or PDF), and/or the exclusive managing and leasing authority agreement with the real estate agent or property manager.
  • Evidence of the value of the rent forgone from the vacant tenancy over the relevant period.

How do I apply?

Applications for Period 1 closed on 30 September 2020.

Applications for Period 2 will open soon and close on 30 April 2021.

How is the relief provided?

If you haven’t fully paid your 2019-20 land tax liability

Relief will be provided as a credit against outstanding 2019-20 land tax for the relevant property.

If you have fully paid your 2019-20 land tax liability

You can request to have this as a credit towards your future land tax liability or as a refund

Please choose your option on the application form.

If you choose to receive the relief as a credit against future land tax, once approved you will see the amount of relief credited on your next land tax liability notice (your next bill).

If you choose a refund by EFT, this will be sent to the account details in the application form.

If you choose a refund by cheque, this will be mailed to the postal address we have on record for you.

I have given my tenant a one off rent reduction. Can I claim the full 25% land tax reduction?

You are eligible for relief up to the amount you pass on to your tenant up in the period, to a maximum of 25% of your 2019-20 land tax for that property.

For example: If you provided a once off rent reduction of $250 and your total land tax liability for that property is $2,000, you can only claim up to the amount of relief you provided, in this example $250 as it is less than 25% of the land tax liability (i.e. $500).

Can rent relief provided in Period 1 be used as evidence of rent relief in Period 2?

No. The 2 periods are separately assessed. Rent relief provided in one period does not apply when we assess another period.

I have an outstanding land tax liability from a year prior to 2019-20. Can I apply?

No, to apply you must not have an outstanding land tax liability prior to 2019-20.

Any outstanding debts from before 2019-20 must be paid in full before you apply.

My tenant is not in financial hardship. What can I do?

The relief is only available to landlords who have provided rent relief to tenants who have been financially impacted by COVID-19.

I live in the property that I own, can I claim the relief?

No, land tax relief is only available for land that was leased to a residential tenant or tenants at 30 March 2020 and continues to be leased or be available for lease.

However you may be eligible for a principal place of residence exemption. For more information see our land tax exemption page.

I own an Airbnb apartment and rent this for short term accommodation.  Can I get the land tax landlord relief?

The land tax relief only applies to property that is leased for non-residential or residential purposes. A lease isn’t part of an Airbnb type of arrangement.

The relief does not apply to an Airbnb apartment.


Land tax relief for commercial owner occupiers

What is a relevant period?

The relevant period for commercial owner-occupiers is:

  • Period 2: 31 October 2020 to 30 April 2021

Who is eligible?

You may be eligible for relief if:

  • you have received a Land Tax Notice of Assessment for 2019-20
  • you do not have an outstanding land tax debt for prior to 2019-20
  • the land you own is used for non-residential purposes
  • you actively conduct a business from your property
  • you own the property and business either directly or through a company or trust that you own and control

and

  • the business is eligible for the Australian Government's JobKeeper payment from 31 October 2020 (either extension period 1 or extension period 2) .
  • the business does not have an annual turnover of more than $50 million.

Properties being held or developed for sale are not eligible for relief unless there is a business being actively conducted on the property. Construction or development work on the property does not qualify as a business being actively conducted on the property.

How much is the COVID-19 commercial owner occupiers land tax relief?

Subject to meeting the eligibility criteria, land tax relief equivalent to 25% of the 2019-20 land tax liability on the relevant property will be provided.

What evidence will I need to provide?

Specific requests for information  for your situation will display as you complete the form.

You will need to provide evidence to support your claim. This could include:

  • Evidence that the business you operate from your property is eligible for the JobKeeper payment from 31 October 2020. This will be evidence of eligibility for the Australian JobKeeper payment in the Australian Government’s first JobKeeper extension period 1 from 28 September until 3 January 2021 or extension period 2 from 4 January 2021 to 28 March 2021.
  • Evidence that the relevant business has turnover of not more than $50 million per annum.

How do I apply?

Applications for relief will open soon and close on 30 April 2021.

How is the relief provided?

If you haven’t fully paid your 2019-20 land tax liability

Relief will be provided as a credit against outstanding 2019-20 land tax for the relevant property.

If you have fully paid your 2019-20 land tax liability

You can request to have this as a credit towards your future land tax liability or as a refund

Please choose your option on the application form.

If you choose to receive the relief as a credit against future land tax, once approved you will see the amount of relief credited on your next land tax liability notice (your next bill).

If you choose a refund by EFT, this will be sent to the account details in the application form.

If you choose a refund by cheque, this will be mailed to the postal address we have on record for you.

I have an outstanding land tax liability from a year prior to 2019-20. Can I apply?

No, to apply you must not have an outstanding land tax liability prior to 2019-20.

Any outstanding debts from before 2019-20 must be paid in full before you apply.

My business was eligible for JobKeeper before 28 September 2020, but is not eligible for JobKeeper after 28 September. Am I eligible for relief?

No. As an owner-occupier you must be eligible for JobKeeper in the period that you are claiming relief for (that is, between 31 October 2020 to 30 April 2021, inclusive).

Part of the criteria includes that the business turnover must be less than $50 million. What is this based on?

The $50 million is based on the 2018-19 financial year Australia wide grouped business turnover.

If the business you operate from the property is a franchise, the $50 million is based on the 2018-19 business turnover for the franchise.


Deferral of 2019-20 third and fourth instalments

Businesses and individuals paying land tax quarterly in 2019-20 will be able to defer payment of their third and fourth quarter instalments for up to six months.

What is the relief?

You can choose to defer the payment of your third and fourth 2019-20 land tax quarterly instalment payments for up to six months from the due date of the third instalment.

Will I still receive my instalment notices?

Yes, we will send your third and fourth instalment notices as usual.

How long can I delay the payment?

Third Instalment: defer payment up to six months from the due date

Fourth Instalment: defer payment up to three months from the due date

If you choose to defer your payments, these will be shown as arrears on your first land tax notice for 2020-21.

Will interest and penalty tax apply?

You will not incur any interest or penalty tax as long as you pay your 2019-20 land tax instalment liabilities within the timeframe mentioned above.

Do I need to apply?

No, you do not need to apply for this deferral.

I haven’t paid my first or second instalment, can I defer these?

No, the deferral relief only applies to your third and fourth instalment payments.

I still have land tax outstanding from previous years, can I defer this?

No, the deferral relief only applies to the 2019-20 third and fourth instalment payments.

Is my land tax waived?

No, you will still be required to pay your land tax, however you can defer the payment of your third and fourth instalment payments.


Land tax reform transition fund

The previously announced land tax reform transitional relief fund available to eligible taxpayers whose land tax bill will increase as a result of the changes in aggregation of land commencing from 1 July 2020 will be increased from 50% to 100% of the increase in an eligible taxpayer’s 2020-21 land tax assessment. This will be subject to the existing criteria.

See the land tax changes page for further information on criteria for the land tax transitional fund.


Concerned about meeting your land tax obligations?

If you have been impacted by COVID-19 and have any concerns about meeting your state revenue obligations, please email us at landtax@sa.gov.au or call (08) 8226 3750 to discuss options available.


Accuracy of Supporting Information

Recipients of any tax relief packages in relation to COVID-19 (including waivers, deferrals or other tax relief) may be subject to an audit by representatives of RevenueSA.

You are required to retain supporting information for a period of five years after the relief has been approved and/or provided to you.

If, during an audit or investigation, the information is found to be inaccurate or fraudulent, the relief amount may be repayable on demand, which may include further penalties.