Green politician Glatli in the Valutahuizen trap

The Economic Commission of the Council of States (WAK-S) announced Tuesday that it would finally want to abolish its own rental value (Blick reported). The association of homeowners (HEV) already has the champagne cold. Although some options for tax deductions disappear in return, the purchase of real estate will probably remain attractive.

However, the homeowners can not yet fold up and down the corks. The Swiss Association of Tenants (SMV) states that it can only accept the abolition of their own rental value if in exchange all and not only a few deductions are canceled. Deductions that the Commission envisages, for example for energy-saving maintenance work.

A conflict of interest for Balthasar Glättli (46)? The green politician is known for the energy transition. As Vice President of the Association of Tenants (SMV) he also strives for equal tax treatment of tenants and owners. He explains himself in the interview.

IN SEARCH: Mr Glättli, is it not a contradiction for you as a politician of the Green Party if the SMV supports a legislative proposal aimed at removing incentives for energy-efficient renovations of buildings?
Balthasar Glättli: Evaluations show that tax relief has little effect and, above all, leads to high tax losses. Who wants to rehabilitate, takes the tax deduction. But almost no one renovates his house for a tax deduction. Direct subsidies have a much better effect and effectively lead to additional renovations. The tax deduction is unfair.

Why would they be dishonest?
They ensure that tenants spread the energy transition too much. After the renovation, the rent increases, although the owner receives part of the costs through a tax deduction. Direct subsidies, on the other hand, lead to less value-added investments. Rent prices therefore rise less strongly.

So the Greens can safely agree with the abolition of their own rental value?
I personally go for it. The group has not discussed it yet.

Nonetheless, the loss of the deduction option for ecological refurbishment contradicts the requirements of Energy Strategy 2050.
The energy strategy wants a higher level of energetic renovations of buildings. This goal can be achieved with targeted subsidies that are faster, cheaper and more social than with tax deductions. We will ensure that grants for subsidies are developed earlier than reduced.

According to WAK-S, the cantons are free to retain the deductibility of energy-efficient renovation in the future. Is it smart to decentralize an essential part of the energy strategy and transfer it to the cantons?
This possibility leads to a cantonal proliferation of extra deductions. It thus contributes to the further violation of the constitutional requirement of equal tax treatment of tenants and owners, and the tax competition between the cantons is rekindled.

The abolition of the intrinsic rental value together with the removal of the deductions is a zero-sum game and would not cause any tax losses, say supporters. So is it a purely symbolic act?
The own rental value and deductions made for the compensation are not understood by many people. The construction of the committee of the Council of States is looking for something. A pure system change with the complete abolition of the own rental value tax and at the same time complete abolition of all deductions in this context would be simpler and more comprehensible.

For years, attempts have been made to abolish their own rental value. Now WAK-S and the Home Owners Association are talking about a "breakthrough" and a "historical milestone". Why would the abolition of all majorities be now?
The abolition is then the majority if in fact not only the own rental value, but also the different tax deductions for owners are abolished. The tenants' association has never fought such a pure system change. What he defends is the '-and-a-side'-mentality of the homeowners' association: abolition of their own taxation on rental value, but still individual deductions.

Posted on 22.08.2018 | Updated 18 minutes ago

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