The Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) has said it is keenly monitoring the payment of rental income tax across the country, and will soon take action against defaulting landlords and property owners.
Despite high compliance of payment, general perception has it that the sector has been left untapped by the tax authority.
“When it comes to rent-income tax, there is a project that is raking in lots of revenue for GRA by the use of geospatial data – a software being used by the authority in collaboration with the various district assemblies to collect rent income tax,” Isaac Kwabena Amoako, Head-Project Management Unit of the GRA told the B&FT.
“We assure the public that those who are evading this tax will soon be contacted to render an account, with the necessary sanctions,” he added.
He said collection of the tax has been automated since 2020, with various district assemblies contacting property owners in their districts to ensure payment. Mr. Amoako said, like any other system, there are people who may contravene; but emphasised that the GRA is determined to ensure 100 percent compliance in the rent sub-sector.
On responsiveness, he noted that when the assemblies take digital records of the properties in their jurisdictions, then through the geospatial data software GRA is able to know whether the said property is being rented or not, adding: “This process has raked in massive revenue since 2020”.
Mr. Amoako was speaking on the margins of an E-levy forum with traders in Accra, where some participants expressed views on the purported neglect of rent tax revenue; a sector they said is very profitable.
There are two rates for rent tax according to the GRA; 8 percent for residential premises and 15 percent for non-residential premises.
The revenue, the tax authority indicates, must be paid within 30 days after the rent income is received by landlords or property owners.
Despite the use of technology for the tax collection, the GRA has been reminding property owners to make copies of all receipts of rent tax payments for inspection by officers of the authority when the need arises.
The authority maintains that failure to pay the tax on rent income by the due date, attracts an interest of 125 percent of the statutory rate compounded monthly.
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