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The first supply of a new residential building within the<br>first three years of it being built shall be zero-rated.

The first supply of a new residential building within the
first three years of it being built shall be zero-rated.

UAE residential units exempt from VAT: FTA

19-11-2017

Residential units in the UAE will remain generally exempt from value added tax (VAT), except for the first supply of a new residential building within the first three years of it being constructed, which will be zero per cent rated, according to the Federal Tax Authority (FTA).

However, the supply of commercial real estate, selling or leasing, will be subject to VAT at five per cent, said the FTA in its statement.

The main difference between zero rate and exempt supplies is that the suppliers of zero-rated goods and/or services can still reclaim all their input VAT, but the suppliers of exempt goods are either not registered for VAT or if they are, they cannot reclaim their imput VAT.

The FTA defines the supply of real estate as activities that include, among other things, the sale, lease or giving of the right to any real estate.

A residential building is a building or part thereof that is intended and designed for occupation by individuals, and mainly includes buildings that can be occupied by any person as main place of residence, it stated.

This does not include any place that is not a building fixed to the ground and that can be moved without being damaged; any building that is used as a hotel, motel, bed and breakfast establishment, hospital or the like; a serviced apartment for which services in addition to the supply of accommodation are provided; and any building constructed or converted without lawful authority.

Meanwhile, a commercial building is any building or part thereof that is not a residential building. Examples include offices, warehouses, hotels, shops, said the statement.

The first supply of a new residential building within the first three years of it being constructed shall be zero-rated. All subsequent supplies shall be exempt, even if within the first three years.

All supplies of commercial property are subject to VAT at five per cent, including all buildings or parts thereof that are not residential buildings.

The owners of residential buildings do not register for VAT if they do not have any other business activities. However, owners who do have other business activities must check to see whether or not they are required to register.

The owner of any building that is not residential, will have to register if the value of the supplies over the preceding 12 months exceeds Dh375,000 ($102,000) in value, or if it is expected that they will exceed Dh375,000 over the coming 30 days, said the FTA in its statement.

An owner of a residential building will not be able to recover VAT on expenses related to the supply of the exempt residential building. Meanwhile, an owner of a commercial building will generally be able to recover VAT on expenses related to the supply of the building.

The rent or sale of a residential part of the building shall be treated as zero-rated or exempt, depending on whether this is a first supply or a subsequent supply. The rent or sale of a commercial part of the building, however, shall be treated as subject to VAT at five per cent, it stated.

The tax incurred by the owner on the building needs to be apportioned where there is an exempt supply, and the portion related to the taxable supply (at 0 per cent and five per cent) may be recovered, it added.-TradeArabia News Service




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