New Rules from the SRO Victoria


Homes located in inner and middle suburban Melbourne left unoccupied for more than six months in 2017, may attract vacant residential land tax (VRLT).

If you own a property in one of the affected council areas and it was unoccupied for six months or more between 1 May and 31 December 2017, you must notify the State Revenue office (SRO), at: http:/, by 15 January 2018.

Affected council areas:

Banyule, Bayside, Booroondara, Darebin, Glen Eira, Hobsons Bay, Manningham, Melbourne, Monash, Moonee Valley, Moreland, Port Phillip, Stonnington and Whitehorse.



What is the vacant residential land tax?

The vacant residential land tax is a tax on residential properties in Melbourne’s inner and middle suburbs which are unoccupied for more than six months a year.  It is a Victorian tax and is different to land tax.

Why did the State Government introduce this tax?

The Government raised concern about the number of properties being left vacant across Melbourne’s inner and middle suburbs and the Government says the tax is intended to encourage land owners to make residential properties available for purchase or rent so that Melbourne’s current housing stock is “used as efficiently as possible”.

Do the six months have to be continuous?

No.  Provided a property was occupied for an aggregate of six months in the preceding calendar year, the vacant residential land tax does not apply for that tax year.

When does the tax start?

The tax applies from 1 January 2018 and is based on use and occupation in the preceding year.  For example, tax liabilities for the 2018 tax year are based on use and occupation in 2017.

How much is the tax and how is it calculated?

It is an annual tax of 1 per cent of the capital improvised value (CIV) of taxable land.  For example, if the taxable land has a CIV of $500,000, the tax is $5,000. 

The CIV of a property is the value of land and buildings as determined by the general valuation process and is found on the owner’s council rates notice.



Who has to pay the tax?

The owner of the property as at midnight on 31 December of the preceding year is liable to pay the vacant residential land tax.

When does the tax have to be paid?

Land owners who have notified the SRO and are liable for the vacant residential land tax receive assessment notices early in the year for properties vacant in the preceding year.  This assessment notice is separate to land tax assessment notices.  Land owners have 60 days to pay their VRLT assessment in full.



If you believe you may be liable for the VRLT and have any questions, visit the SRO website at: or please do not hesitate to call your usual hmh contact or Director.