The Budget presented for 2020 was on the most part a pretty uneventful budget. The budget very clearly showed that the country is in surplus, with its strict emphasis on the fact that this was the third consecutive budget without an increase in taxes. The budget was also full of tax rebates and one offs meant to counter increases in the cost of living (such as the milk and bread price bonus).
However, ASCS feels that the root cause of much discontent such as rampant construction and the negatives that come with it, the constant nibbling of ODZ land alongside the poverty inducing skyrocketing rental prices, were barely addressed in this budget and if so, only at surface level. However there is hope that the new rental policy may help to solve some of these issues.
As already referred to, the 2020 Budget does not include any new taxes, tariffs or duties, or an increase on the current ones. Despite taxes not being increased, this year the government is expected to receive €141 million more in income taxes alone from income taxes in 2020. This reduces the need to increase taxes that will counter the increases in expenditure brought about by increased welfare benefits and increased spending on roads and infrastructure.
A new scheme was announced whereby people under 40 years of age who are not able to cover the 10% deposit to qualify for a mortgage will be eligible for a government interest-free loan up to a maximum of €17,000. This is a big step forward in the fight to eclipse the unprecedented increase in property prices in the last 5 years.
The first-time buyers’ scheme, which usually impacts young people starting in life, will continue into 2020 with some small adjustments to the inflation in this area although the adjustments fall short of the rise in prices.