Would Brussels rather lose its 13 million square meters of office space? In any case, these offices are more than ever a lucrative source of income for the Brussels authorities. The tax burden on offices has always been higher in Brussels than in Flanders. This difference has only increased in the past year, according to a study by Ayming, a consultant specialized in optimizing property taxes, who was able to see the Time.
Offices have been taxed more and more for years. Property tax (public transport) on office space in Belgium rose from 41.04 percent in 2019 to 41.48 percent in 2020. Only eight of the 591 Belgian municipalities have lowered the tax burden on offices this year, 81 have increased,
Companies have reasons to think twice (fiscally) about the location where they will be located. The differences are huge. Nowhere in Belgium is a company for offices better off fiscally than in Sint-Martens-Latem (ov of 18.01 percent of indexed AI). Nowhere is it worse off than in Ath (64.94 percent).
From a fiscal point of view, Flanders (29.18 percent) is clearly more office-friendly than the Brussels-Capital Region (51.20 percent) and Wallonia (55.07 percent).
Not only ov
In Brussels, more additional taxes are added each year to the already high property tax. The Brussels Regional Tax (BGB) mainly affects office space. According to Ayming’s Alexandra Dryjski, the BGB corresponds to an average of 28 percent of property taxes. As a result, Schaerbeek ultimately comes to a tax burden on real estate of 78.38 percent.
If one takes everything into account, offices are most heavily taxed in Sint-Agatha-Berchem, Evere, Schaerbeek and Sint-Joost-Ten-Node.
The Brussels municipalities also pass by the cash register. The municipal tax amounts to an average of 14.5 euros per m² of office space. Eight of the 19 municipalities, including Brussels City, levy a tax on parking spaces. Some also have a municipal tax on rental vacancy. “If one takes everything into account, offices are most heavily taxed in Sint-Agatha-Berchem, Evere, Schaerbeek and Sint-Joost-Ten-Node,” concludes Dryjski.
Force of the majority
Ayming also notes that the registry of the land register has recently become stricter when a request for a reduction of property tax is made due to renovation work. As a result of the corona crisis, the consultant sees a reason to invoke force majeure, but success is anything but assured.