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Rebates & Remissions

Central Government rates rebates scheme

The Rates Rebate Scheme was established by the Government (Department of Internal Affairs - DIA) in 1973 to provide a subsidy to low income homeowners on the cost of their rates. The rebate can save you up to $610.

Are you eligible?

In 2015 and 2016 the Government increased the rates rebate threshold – meaning more people are now eligible for the rebate.

  • income threshold: $24,740 
  • additional income: $500 per dependant

This means the income threshold for a full rates rebate for the 2016/2017 year is $24,740 and is increased by $500 for each dependant in the household.

Although a ratepayer's income may exceed the income threshold, a rates rebate could still be available depending on the rates amount paid and the number of dependants. See the DIA’s rates rebate entitlement calculator and rebate eligibility examples to see if you are eligible.

If you are worried about applying for the rates rebate because it may affect your WINZ Accommodation Supplement, then phone the WINZ Superannuation freephone on 0800 552 002. They will work out the effect on your supplement for you.

Rates rebate entitlement calculator

Rebate eligibility examples 

How to apply

Homeowners can apply for a rebate when they receive their August invoice. If you have previously applied for a rates rebate at your current property we will automatically send you a new form each year.

Otherwise you can print and complete the application form below to apply.

Rates Rebate Application Form (for 2016/17 only) (395kb pdf)

When applying for the rates rebate you will need:

  • information on your income (before tax) for the previous financial year (ending 31 March 2016)
  • information on your partner’s / joint homeowner's income for the previous financial year if he/she lived with you on the 1st July 2016

Once done you can mail your application to: Tauranga City Council - Private Bag 12022 - Tauranga 3143

You can also get it processed at our Customer Service Centre at 91 Willow Street.  

If you are granted a rates rebate the Council will reduce your rates by the amount of the rebate, or you may request a refund if you have already paid your current rates instalment.

Contact the Rates Rebate Team

If you would like any further information please feel free to call Tauranga City Council on  07 577 7000. Otherwise you can email the Department of Internal Affairs at or call them on 04 460 2200.

Tauranga City Council rates remissions

Council’s Rates Remission Policy was updated on 29 June 2015 as part of the Long Term Plan. Please see the policy for details on the rates remissions that may be considered, and conditions.
Rates Remission Policy 

Here’s an overview of remissions and information on how to apply. Contact details are at the bottom of the page; see full policy for details.

1. Remission of Uniform Annual General Charge (UAGC)
Council may remit the additional UAGC for a separately used or inhabited part of a rating unit where a person is unable to fully utilise the unit’s facilities e.g. due to disability and/or age.

How: send Council a written request declaring that the separate area is unable to be utilised independently by the person living there.

2. Remission of rates penalties
Council may remit penalties on rates in some circumstances (see full policy). In most cases Council can set up agreed payment arrangements that will allow penalties to be remitted.  

How: apply by phone, email or in person at Council. 

3. Remissions for community and not-for-profit organisations
Council will consider various remissions for community and not-for-profit organisations that deliver social benefits to the community.

How: fill in the form below and send to Council with all necessary attachments.

Rates Remission Application Form - Community (needs based) (131kb pdf)

Note: if your community or not-for-profit organisation was granted a remission for land rates last year, no need to reapply this year: you will receive the remission automatically. Please check your invoice before completing an application. Remember that service charges for water and wastewater will still apply. 

4. Water rates remissions

You may be eligible for a water rates remission if you’ve had a water leak.

How: fill in the form below and .send to Council with all necessary attachments.

Water Remission Form (46kb pdf)*

5. Remission of wastewater rates on commercial properties.

Council may partially remit wastewater rates for commercial ratepayers that choose to install more toilets than required by the Building Code.

How: use the calculator below to see if you qualify, then send written evidence to Council by email or post.

Building Code calculator for toilet pans

6.  Remission of wastewater rates for schools and early childhood centres.

Council remits wastewater rates for qualifying educational establishments as determined under the Rating Powers (Special Provisions for Certain Rates for Educational Establishments) Amendment Act 2001. 

7. Remission for natural disasters and emergencies

In the event of a natural disaster or other type of emergency affecting the capacity of one or more rating units to be used for an extended period of time, Council may remit all or part of any rate or charge where it considers it fair to do so.

How: to be determined by Council resolution after the occurrence of any event.

8. Remission for buildings undergoing earthquake strengthening (CBD)

Ratepayers of commercial properties in Tauranga city centre that are undergoing earthquake strengthening may apply for a remission on general rates.

How: fill in the form below and send to Council by 30 June prior to the year when the remission is to apply.

Rates Remission Application Form – Earthquake-strengthening (116kb pdf)

9. Contiguous rating

If you have two or more rating units that are owned by exactly the same owner/s, are contiguous (share a boundary) and are used jointly as a single unit, you may qualify for contiguous rating. This means that Council would treat them as if they were one single rating unit, for rating assessment purposes. This can have the effect of reducing the Uniform Annual General Charges and some targeted rates such as wastewater availability and the targeted regional transport rate. 

How: write to Council with your request and details of your contiguous rating.

10. Exceptions

Are you in another situation that you think warrants a remission? This may be considered by the Financial Controller.

How: write to Council with your request and details of your unusual circumstances.

Contact details for applications

Mailing address: Tauranga City Council
Private Bag 12022
Tauranga 3143

Drop-in: Customer Service Centre
91 Willow Street

Phone:07 577 7000


* these documents are in Adobe Acrobat (PDF) format. You need to have the Adobe Acrobat Reader installed on your computer. You can download a free version from the Adobe site.



Last Reviewed: 12/05/2017