Your rates contribute to the delivery of more than 200 products and community services to our diverse and ever changing community.
Each property is individually assessed by the Valuer Generals Office once every three years to determine its Gross Rental Value (GRV), which is the yearly rent the property would be expected to receive. Where a property is vacant, the GRV is calculated as 3% of the market value of the land.
The City of Melville then sets the the Rate in the Dollar, a charge to maintain the City's services set as part of the yearly budget process, which is applied uniformly to all households.
A combination of the two result in your rates charges: Your rates = GRV x Rate in Dollar.
Your rates also include additional charges which are flat rate fees that are not affected by your Gross Rental Value. These include an Emergency Services Levy, which goes to the Department of Fire and Emergency Services, and a Property Surveillance Charge, which funds the Community Safety Service (CSS).
Properties with a pool or spa also pay a Pool/Spa Inspection Fee, which is used to fund the Swimming Pool Compliance Program. Properties located in an underground power project area also pay additional charges to fund the installation of underground power in that suburb.
Any charges applicable to you will be on the front of your rates notice.
How is GRV determined? Can I appeal my GRV?
Gross Rental Value is the yearly income the property would be expected to generate if rented. The valuation is provided and determined by the Valuer Generals Office and is updated every three years. The rental value for a house is influence by factors like age, construction, size, car shelters and pools. By analysing property rents against these individual attributes and characteristics it is possible to assess a valuation for all properties, whether they are rented or not.
Do I have to pay my rates if I have lodged an objection or appeal of my GRV?
The Valuation of Land Act 1978 (as amended) Part IV sets out the manner in which objections and appeals may be instituted if you object to the GRV set for your property.
An objection against the valuation must be made in writing and received by the Valuer General, 1 Midland Square, Midland WA 6056 or by Council, within 60 days of the issue of this rate notice. Please quote your Ven number which can be found on the notice.
A person who is dissatisfied with the decision of the Valuer General in respect to the objective may lodge an appeal to the Land Valuable Tribunal.
If an objection or an appeal is lodged, the full amount (depending on payment option chosen) of rates remains due and payable by the due date on the notice, regardless of the expected outcome of the appeal.
What payment options are available?
Yes, if an objection or an appeal is lodged, the full amount (depending on payment option chosen) of rates remains due and payable by the due date on the notice, regardless of the expected outcome of the appeal.
If you do not pay, interest will begin to accrue after the due date/instalment date/s and will continue to accrue each day until the overdue amount is paid. For 2019/2020, this amount is set at 8% calculated daily.
Do you offer payment plans?
The City offers three standard payment options:
- Full payment by the early payment date (qualifying for the Rates Prize Draw)
- Full payment by the due date
- Four quarterly instalments (admin fee and instalment interest applies)
We also offer flexible payment plans to suit your needs. Contact our rates department if you would like to spread out your rates in weekly, fortnightly, monthly or even ad-hoc instalments. An admin fee of $17.50 and instalment interest of 4% will apply.
I’m having trouble paying my rates. What do I do?
Yes we do. Please contact our rates department if you would like to set up a payment plan. An admin fee of $17.50 and instalment charge of 4% will apply.
Are there any penalties for not paying your rates on time?
Should you be experiencing financial difficulties, alternative payment arrangements can be made with the City of Melville by contacting our friendly rates department via phone (08) 9364 0666 | 1300 635 845 or by email email@example.com. We strongly encourage those who have difficulties in meeting their payments to make contact with our rates department as early as possible. The City of Melville also offers a financial counselling service. Visit www.melvillecity.com.au/financialcounselling for more information.
What happens if I refuse to pay my rates?
Under Section 6.51 of the Local Government Act 1995, The City may charge interest on overdue balances. Interest will begin to accrue after the due date/instalment date/s and will continue to accrue each day until the overdue amount is paid. For 2019/2020, the rate of interest is set at 8% calculated daily. This rate is set in accordance with Local Government (Financial Management) Regulations 1996.
Eligible pensioners and seniors are exempt from late payment penalty interest.
I’m a pensioner/senior. Can I get a discount?
Rates and service charges that remain outstanding 35 days after the date of issue may be recovered by legal action without further notice. Costs incurred in any legal action taken to recover the outstanding amount will be added to your account. If payment is allowed to fall into arrears for a period of three or more years, the City may:
- Sell the land;
- Take the land and let or lease the property;
- Have the land vested in the Local Government;
- Have the land vested in the Crown.
I am a pensioner/senior. Can I defer my rates?
Seniors with a valid WA Seniors Card are eligible for a 25% rebate for ESL and 25% for rates up to a maximum of $100; and pensioners who hold either a Pensioner Concession Card, State Concession Card, or both a WA Seniors Card and Commonwealth Seniors Health Card are eligible for a 50% rebate up to a maximum of $750. To be eligible, the applicant must be the owner-occupier of the property as at 1 July of the rating year. Partial concessions may be available for people who become eligible during that rating year. All seniors/pensioners must pay the amount under ‘Total Charged’ to receive the rebate.
To apply for a rebate, visit www.watercorporation.com.au/concessions and fill in the application form. If there are arrears outstanding on the property when you apply, they must be paid to receive you rebate.
If your circumstances change, i.e. you are no longer the owner-occupier or lose your pensioner/senior status, you must tell our rates department immediately.
What is the Emergency Services Levy?
Pensioners fulfilling the requirements above also have the option to defer their rates, however, cannot claim the rebate if they choose to do so. Pensioners deferring their rates must still pay the Property Surveillance Charge and Pool Inspection Fee (if applicable). You must be registered with the Water Corporation to be eligible to defer your rates. All arrears also need to be paid in full to be able to defer your rates.
Rebates to Pensioners and Seniors under the Rates and Charges (Rebates and Deferments Act) are funded by the Government of Western Australia.
What is the Property Surveillance Charge?
The Emergency Service Levy helps fund WA’s fire and emergency services, including fire stations, volunteer fire brigades, State Emergency Service (SES) units, the Volunteer Marine Rescue Service and the multi-purpose Volunteer Emergency Service Units.
This levy is a State Government charge and is required to be collected on behalf of the Department of Fire and Emergency Service (DFES) by all Western Australia Local Government Authorities. For more information, visit www.dfes.wa.gov.au/esl
Why do I pay the Property Surveillance Charge if my property is vacant?
All properties are charged the Property Surveillance Charge, which helps fund a range of programs and services to improve neighbourhood amendity, including the City’s Community Safety Service (CSS), a highly visible, 24/7 mobile patrol service that acts as extra eyes and ears for the community and police.
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What is the Pool/Spa Inspection Fee?
The property surveillance and security charge covers a range of programs and services to improve neighbourhood amenity. These include the reporting of graffiti and community development programs for groups such as at-risk youth and the elderly. The aim is to improve overall safety and security, to make Melville a great place to live. This helps to maintain property values for owners.
Vacant land can also be damaged, have material dumped without authorisation, or people may congregate and cause a nuisance. In addition, vacant land may be under construction. The Community Safety Service observes and reports any problems spotted on vacant land or construction sites, which is important as the lot is generally unoccupied.
Will my pool be inspected every year?
In accordance with Building Regulations 2012, a Pool/Spa inspection fee is charged to properties that have a private pool or a spa containing water that is more than 300mm deep. It is used to fund the Swimming Pool Compliance Program, which includes inspection and advice to property owners on pool safety and legislative obligations. All pools in the City are inspected every four years.
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What are these underground power charges?
The legislative requirement is that each pool is inspected every four years and brought into compliance. The City of Melville strategy is to complete inspections on 25 percent of all pools within the City each year. The annual pool levy charge is equal to one quarter of the cost of providing this service for each home.
Additional inspections, such as when purchasing a property, are available upon request on a fee for service basis.
Do I have to pay the underground power charges all at once?
The underground power charges are used to fund the installation of underground power in project suburbs. They consist of a network service charge and a network connection fee. The network service charge is the same for all properties in the project area. The network connection fee is only charged if a suitable connection doesn’t already exist. If it does, no connection charge is applied. If a connection already exists but needs more work to connect to the network, a modified connection fee is charged. If no connection exists, then a full connection fee is charged.
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You do not have to pay it all at once. The City is able to offer payment arrangements to residents, with the option of spreading underground power charges over a repayment period of five years from the date of issue. Interest applies at 4% per annum calculated daily on any remaining underground power charges.
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