Government and BREA agree on way forward following valuation issues – Eye Witness News

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NASSAU, BAHAMAS – Economic Affairs Minister Michael Halkitis said yesterday that the government and the Bahamas Real Estate Association (BREA) have “agreed on a way forward” on the property tax assessment issue.

Back in January The Bahamas Real Estate Association (BREA) has challenged the legality of the Department of Inland Revenue’s property revaluation exercise, which reportedly resulted in the accurate valuation and registration of 10,000 previously unregistered properties. BREA had urged the government to withdraw its 2022 property tax assessment, citing that its assessors were not properly licensed under the law.

Addressing the issue yesterday, Halkitis said: “About a month ago there was a meeting with the Bahamas Real Estate Association. As we said at the outset, their complaint about non-Bahamians doing reviews did not materialize. That’s not what we were doing. We had a meeting. I think it’s been productive and we’ve agreed on a way forward in terms of when we need reviews and second opinions, to work with them to achieve that.

“Going forward, we will pursue opportunities to work together. Where there are opportunities to have business or to have appraisals done and to ensure that we have reputable real estate professionals, we will be able to do that,” Halkitis said.

For her part, BREA chair Christine Wallace-Whitfield said the discussion with the Prime Minister was “positive”.

“At the end of the day, we’re just trying to make sure we’re working with the government and they understand our concerns,” Wallace-Whitfield said.

“When we met the Prime Minister, he understood where we were coming from. I think it was a positive discussion. In the future, people will need to have their properties appraised and it will be a busy time for BREA Appraisers. They are trained and understand the law of the land. Moving forward, I think it’s very important that we all try to work together.

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