Are you eligible for a Rates Rebate?
Published on August 14, 2023
Around 2,200 Horowhenua ratepayers received a rates rebate in the 2022/23 rating year. If eligible, you are entitled to a rates rebate of up to a maximum of $750 for the 2023/24 rating year.
Mayor Bernie Wanden says, “We are trying to make the rates rebates application process as easy as possible to ensure everyone eligible receives the rebate. You no longer need to book time with a Council officer to complete your application, but they are on hand if you do need help.”
Group Manager Organisation Performance Jacinta Straker says, “If your only income is from benefits and you complete our Rates Rebate Ministry of Social Development (MSD) Income Release Waiver form, we’ll get your proof of income on your behalf. This saves you from having to go between Council and MSD. There’s no need to come and sign the form in the presence of a Council Officer. You simply need to complete the form, which will be included in your August rates notice. The forms are also available at our Civic Building and on our website.”
The Rates Rebate Scheme provides a rebate of up to $750 for people whose annual income is $30,100 or less and who are paying rates for the home they were living in on 1 July 2023. Rebates are calculated based on your household income, the number of dependents living with you and the total amount of rates for 2023/24. Proof of income from IRD is required if you receive other sources of income (e.g. interest, rentals) on top of your benefit.
For example, suppose your rates are $3,000 in total for Horowhenua District Council and Horizons Regional Council combined, and your income is closer to $40,000. In that case, you are eligible for approximately $600.
Even if you earn up to $45,000 you may still be eligible for some level of rebate.
If you think you might be eligible for a rate rebate, follow the process below to get started.
Check your eligibility
To check your entitlement, visit the 'Getting a rates rebate’ page on the New Zealand Government website and enter your details into the rebate calculator.
You’ll need to provide the following:
- proof of income (before tax) for the tax year ended 31 March 2023 (this includes any interest at the bank); and
- proof of your spouse/partner's or joint income if living together.
- We’ll be able to access your rates information.
Additionally, for self-employed people:
- a complete set of business accounts for the year ended 31 March 2023
- you cannot offset business losses against other income.
How to apply
Complete the relevant form(s).
The Rates Rebates application, declaration and waiver forms will be sent with your rates notice in August and are also available on our Rates Rebates page.
If your only source of income (and your spouse/partner/joint homeowner's only income) was from benefits, we can get your proof of benefit income on your behalf if you also complete the Rates Rebate MSD Income Release Waiver form.
If you live in a retirement village, your village manager is required to sign a declaration form.
Return your completed forms by email, mail or in person.
- Post: Send your completed and signed application form, including the supporting documents, to Horowhenua District Council, Private Bag 4002, Levin 5540.
- In person: Drop off your completed and signed form at one of council offices.
Applications close on Friday 30 June 2024.
While Council staff no longer need to be present to complete applications, we are happy to help. Call us on 06 366 0999 or email your name and phone number to firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance.
If you think you might struggle to meet your next rates payment, even if you’re not eligible for a rates rebate, our team are here to support you. We know things are tough at the moment with rising living costs. We can help you manage your rates payments in several ways, such as spreading your payments into affordable amounts to be paid during the year by direct debit so you avoid any penalties. Email us or call 06 366 0999 to discuss a payment plan that works for you.
What happens next?
If you’re successful, we'll deduct the amount of your rebate from your rates bill. If you’ve already paid your rates in full, we’ll give you a refund.