During the boom years, there were a lot of buildings erected on the coast that didn’t have proper planning permission. Because they were not regularised, the appropriate taxes were not paid on them. Orihuela council estimates there are between eight and twelve thousand homes that fall into this category.
It seems unfair that owners of houses that were built legally should have paid the taxes and those that were not have been able to avoid them. The tax amounts to about 4% of the value of the property and would bring an extra 2.5 million euros to the city if every one paid.
The council are now working with SUMA to notify owners where they stand and their obligation to make the payments.
Of course the letters will come as a blow to many households who maybe thought they had got away with not paying the tax or were unaware that any such tax existed. They will benefit though because, once legalised, at least they can sell their properties.