Article written by S’negugu, Candidate Attorney, checked and released by Chantelle Gladwin-Wood, Partner at Schindlers Attorneys
02 November 2021
A rates rebate is a discount on the amount of rates that you pay to the municipality each month in respect of your property ownership. Certain registered owners of property located within the City of Johannesburg Metropolitan Municipality (“COJ”) can apply for pensioners rebates. There are specific criteria that needs to be met before a pensioner can qualify for a rebate, and these are prescribed by the municipality and they change from time to time. Because the requirements change, it is important to always check what the current requirements are, before applying. It is also important to keep checking whether the criteria have changed, if you have already applied, as you may need to re-apply or you may no longer qualify.
At present, it is a requirement that the pensioner (a person 60 years or older) own the property and personally occupy the property. In a case of dual ownership, at least one of the owners must be 60 years or older. However, there are other requirements too that need to be fulfilled before a pensioner will qualify for one of the four tiers of pensioner rebates.
Categories of Rebates available to Pensioners
The COJ’s Property Rates Policy provides for different degrees of rebates for pensioners who are 60 years of age or older. Some rebates are awarded automatically while you must apply for others. There are 4 categories of pensioners who are eligible to apply for reduction of rates:
- Pensioners dependent on a national security grant qualify for 100 percent rebate subject to criteria.
- Pensioners with a gross monthly earning of less than R10 545.00 qualify for 100 percent rebate subject to criteria.
- Pensioners with a gross monthly income of more than R10 545.00 but less than R18 073.00 qualify for 50 percent rebate subject to criteria.
- Pensioners who are 70 (seventy) years of age and older, irrespective of their income, qualify for 100 percent rebate subject to criteria.
- The rebate is applicable for only one property should the applicant own more than one property.
a. The rebate is based on the market value of the property.
b. The rebate only applies in respect of properties with a market value of less than R 2,5 million.
c. The pensioner to whom the rebate is granted, and who is an owner of that property, must personally occupy the property.
d. It only applies to the following types of properties: property must be for residential purpose, farm property used for residential purposes, and/or small holdings used for residential.
e. A pensioner rebate will be applied to one property per pensioner or pensioner and spouse only.
f. The rebate can only be granted for one property per pensioner, namely the property that the pensioner actually lives in.
In lodging an application for pensioners rebates, the applicant must complete and submit a pensioner’s rebate form, relevant to their status, and attach all the documentation required. The farms are available from customer service centres, City’s website ( www.joburg.org.za )or you can request a form via email by sending a request to firstname.lastname@example.org. Pensioner Rebates On Rates Form.cdr (joburg.org.za)
In addition to the pensioners rebates form, you will need to submit the following documents:
- Certified application form by commissioner of oaths.
- Certified copy of your South African Identity Document.
- Certified copy of your pension card (back and front).
- Proof of income.
- 3 months bank statement.
- SARS income tax certificate.
- Copy of municipal statement.
If you are 70 years and above, you will only need to submit a certified copy of your Identity Document.
Application forms can be submitted as follow:
- At your nearest Customer Services Centre.
- E-mailed to email@example.com
- Mailed to: Rates and taxes (Rebates) P.O BOX 5000, Johannesburg 2000.
What Happens Once My Pensioner’s Rebate is Approved?
On approval of the application for a pensioner’s rebate, the abovementioned rebates will be applicable. A discount on monthly rates payable. The application needs to be done every two years, so don’t forget to keep checking whether the qualifying criteria change or whether the validity period of your prior application is coming to an end soon.
We would highly encourage pensioners who qualify to make use of this opportunity. Times are tough and even a few rands could make all the difference.
Pensioner who are above the age of 60 years can apply for rates rebate, provided that all the other requirements are met.