16/7/2018-6

Vacant tax driven by hatred and selfishness

Lin Zhengshun responded to the public opinion and introduced a vacant tax on the first floor. The party was applauded. Some political parties rushed to invite merits. They pointed out that this proposal originated from themselves. The chief executive did not adopt his suggestion, and even thought that the government should pursue the victory and introduce a vacant tax on second-hand buildings. Another city. However, it is interesting to note that the supporters who support the vacant tax are down to the current commentators, and there is no exception that even if the vacant tax is implemented, the property price will not be suppressed. If so, what is the significance of the implementation?

From a public policy perspective, whenever a policy is implemented, there are actually three elements to consider: goals, effectiveness, and costs. The vacant tax supporters are usually based on the slogan “The supply of a residential unit cannot be less" and “The housing is a basic human right", but they all ignore the importance of the latter two. If a measure implemented cannot effectively achieve the policy goal, it is a failure policy. So how effective is the vacant tax on the first floor?

Although many current commentators have buried as many as 9,000 vacant flats, they are only a small part of the vacant lot for more than one year. There are also relevant data indicating that the current completion and sales volume of residential units in Hong Kong are actually The gap is not large, which proves that real estate developers have no obvious hoarding behavior. More importantly, many people mistake the amount of completion and the amount of hoarding that cannot be directly compared. Last year, the completion of 18,000 private residences was a concept of continuous increase: if the total completion amount can be increased by 1,000 per year, then There will be 10,000 in ten years; but the amount of hoarding is a fixed number of concepts, which means that if the vacant tax can immediately force 9,000 hoarding units to launch the market, then the second year will be There is no hoarding unit to speak of, let alone most of the 9,000 units are not intended to be hoarded for a long time. It is no wonder that even those who support vacant taxes are also aware of these seven so-called “hoarding units". Even if you put it back in the market, it’s just like a mud cow, and it won’t work.

Easy to evade and difficult to enforce

Another problem with vacant tax is that it is easy to circumvent and it is difficult to enforce the law: the vacant tax on the first-hand building that will be implemented will put a lot of pressure on the real estate developers, so that they must consider whether to sell the units that currently hold the taxation period. . However, it is also very simple to offset the effect of this measure: as long as the construction in the current construction is slowed down, even if it is built to 99%, it will be suspended, and then it will be re-sold immediately before the deadline for the sale of the land. Is the Government again? Why have you got it? At present, the sales period of the site is different depending on the environmental conditions (for example, involving greening areas or slope maintenance works) for a period of five to eight years, but there are two other factors affecting the launch of the property. The re-sale of land, the approval of land-construction paper, or even the pre-sale of uncompleted flats are often continually being squandered, and even more and more slow, as if “cooperating" real estate developers to slow down the sale of flats, why have they never had political parties and commentators? Ask for more people? There is also the West Rail Yuen Long Station Overhead Bridge and the Dawei Station platform, which have caused the suspension of the New World and Xinhong Bases due to settlement, reflecting the safety issue will be the highest principle for the real estate developers to continue construction; if the real estate developers later “Safety" as a reason for delaying the completion or even the sale of real estate, will always be an endless legal process and lawsuit. Is this “cost" supported by the vacant tax?

When the effectiveness of the vacant tax on the first floor is not optimistic and the potential cost is so high, then we need to ask again, what is the target of vacant tax? If we continue to deceive ourselves and insist on this as a measure to “suppress property prices", then it would be better for the Government: because in the future, if there are members of the public or political parties who criticize the Government for “nothing to do," Mr Lam can “vacate the tax". Public relations means that the public has responded to the request of “doing a slap" to ease the pressure of criticism – let us open the skylight and say that the levy tax is never for the purpose of increasing supply, but for punishing those who cannot see it. A large number of real estate developers.

Commentators and politicians believe that since houses are necessities, any hoarders are ruining social peace. They must be punished by laws or taxes, and owners who own houses without renting or selling. This kind of thinking is actually very dangerous. Regardless of whether there are people in the market who advocate higher cost and easier evasion of second-hand building vacancy tax (it is said that as long as the water meter can be enforced, then what standard can be legally defined as “vacant"? Environmentalists such as Lin Chaoying Has the vacancy law been violated?) If the vacant unit is to be punished, is the vacant room? Why do some families clearly have only two or three people, but actually live in a large unit with five or six rooms? Some family factor women go abroad to study and long lost their rooms. According to the reason, they should not be regulated. Is there a vacant tax on these rooms that are not rented to those in need? Don’t tell me that it is easy to patrol the vacant rooms, or to hide the vacant rooms. Isn’t it said that the vacant tax target of the first-hand building is nearly zero, the implementation cost is high and the evasion is easy? Why would anyone continue to persist?

Then the most intriguing thing is the Citizens Party and Liang Jichang, who support the most vacant tax, and they are embarrassed about other measures to combat property prices. They fully urged the Government to implement the vacant tax on non-Hong Kong second-hand buildings in the next step, but at the same time they considered that it is justifiable that Hong Kong residents vacant one or two properties for their children. It is also clear that the most effective measure for Hong Kong to “place a home for everyone" and to avoid tenants’ long-term assistance to owners is to impose progressive rates on all owners holding more than one flat. However, the Citizens’ Party and Liang Jichang not only don’t mention this, but instead support the government to send sugar back to the country every year to reduce the cost of goods held by the big owners. This is for any middle and lower class citizens who suffer from rent exploitation. It is difficult to understand. But it is not difficult to find out the answer. Just look up the number of properties that Liang Jichang and some Citizen Party members hold, and they will understand that it is wonderful.