Rural landholders urged to check new valuations

AgForce is urging rural landholders to check new land valuations released are correct to ensure they don’t end up paying more in council rates and leasehold rent than they should.

AgForce rural property valuer John Moore said Queensland’s Valuer-General issued 507,000 valuations in 22 council areas across Queensland with the valuation of some individual properties in the south-west rising by up to 100 per cent.

“Unimproved values determine what council rates rural landholders pay and are also used to calculate leasehold rents, so it’s important the figures are right,” he said.

“Movements in valuations are highly variable, with a 10 – 30 per cent rise on average across Queensland and some individual properties in the Maranoa and Murweh shires increasing by 75 – 100 per cent.

“The difficulty in using unimproved value as a basis for land rent and rates is that only a small portion of landholders in a market – the buyers – are setting the value for the rest. This is despite the fact that many primary producers living in council areas receiving new valuations are facing their sixth year of drought and can’t afford big increases in rent and rates.

“While there is a 10 per cent per annum cap on leasehold rents, a rise of even that magnitude will be difficult for most primary producers to cop, and we’d urge Mayors and rural councillors to manage any rate increases through a range of measures including capping, freezing and adjusting their differential rating.”

Mr Moore encouraged rural landholders who receive new valuations to check them using the Land Valuations Globe online and see how they compare to surrounding properties.

“Landholders need to check their valuations and lodge an objection if necessary so they don’t end up paying more than they should,” he said.

Mr Moore said the latest valuation increases highlighted the need for perpetual lessees to consider freeholding their properties before both freeholding and leasehold rents become unaffordable.

The Local Government Areas receiving new valuations in 2018 are: Banana, Barcoo, Boulia, Bulloo, Central Highlands, Charters Towers, Diamantina, Douglas, Fraser Coast, Gladstone, Gold Coast, Goondiwindi, Hinchinbrook, Isaac, Maranoa, Murweh, Noosa, Paroo, Quilpie, Scenic Rim, Sunshine Coast and Toowoomba.

Landholders have 60 days in which to object to their new valuation, and AgForce members in affected regions can contact AgForce on 3236 3100 to book a free consultation with John Moore.

Source: AgForce