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Real Property Taxes in Europe

2 min readBy: Alex Mengden

Early property taxes, first implemented in feudal times, were levied primarily on land and paid mostly by farmers. In modern times, property taxes are also levied on assets like real estate and paid on a recurrent basis by individuals or legal entities.

Real Property Taxes in Europe as of 2023 Tax Foundation European OECD Data of Real Property Tax Rates in Europe

High property taxes levied not only on land but also on buildings and structures can discourage investment in infrastructure, which businesses would have to pay additional taxA tax is a mandatory payment or charge collected by local, state, and national governments from individuals or businesses to cover the costs of general government services, goods, and activities. on. For this reason, businesses may choose to locate away from places with high property taxes

Two of the 30 European countries covered here, Liechtenstein and Malta, do not levy any recurrent taxes on property at all. Estonia is the sole country in this map to tax only land, meaning that its real property taxA property tax is primarily levied on immovable property like land and buildings, as well as on tangible personal property that is movable, like vehicles and equipment. Property taxes are the single largest source of state and local revenue in the U.S. and help fund schools, roads, police, and other services. is the most efficient.

Of the 28 countries that levy property taxes, 23 allow businesses to deduct property or land taxes from corporate income, which mitigates the tax burden and encourages businesses to invest.

Luxembourg has the lowest property tax revenue as a share of its private capital stock, at 0.05 percent. Switzerland has the second-lowest share, at 0.08 percent, followed by the Czech Republic, at 0.09 percent. The highest property taxes as a share of the private capital stock occur in the United Kingdom (1.77 percent), Iceland (1.14 percent), and Greece (1.1 percent).

Real Property Taxes in Europe, as of 2021

CountryProperty Tax as Share of Private Capital StockReal Property or Land TaxReal Property or Land Taxes Deductible from Corporate Income Tax
Austria0.10%Tax on Real PropertyNo
Belgium0.60%Tax on Real Property (a)Yes
Bulgaria0.19%Tax on Real PropertyNo
Czech Republic0.09%Tax on Real PropertyYes
Denmark0.74%Tax on Real PropertyYes
Estonia0.11%Land TaxNo
Finland0.37%Tax on Real PropertyYes
France1.00%Tax on Real PropertyYes
Germany0.21%Tax on Real Property (b)Yes
Greece1.10%Tax on Real PropertyNo
Hungary0.26%Tax on Real PropertyNo
Iceland1.14%Tax on Real PropertyNo
Ireland0.22%Tax on Real PropertyYes
Italy0.62%Tax on Real PropertyNo
Latvia0.40%Tax on Real PropertyYes
Lithuania0.22%Tax on Real PropertyYes
Luxembourg0.05%Tax on Real PropertyYes
Netherlands0.55%Tax on Real PropertyYes
Norway0.20%Tax on Real PropertyYes
Poland0.90%Tax on Real PropertyYes
Portugal0.43%Tax on Real PropertyYes
Slovak Republic0.28%Tax on Real PropertyYes
Slovenia0.28%Tax on Real PropertyNo
Spain0.58%Tax on Real PropertyNo
Sweden0.34%Tax on Real PropertyYes
Switzerland0.08%Tax on Real PropertyYes
Turkey0.13%Tax on Real PropertyYes
United Kingdom1.77%Tax on Real PropertyYes
United States (for comparison)1.72%Tax on Real PropertyYes
(a) Tax on the imputed rent of properties. Applies to machinery.
(b) Levied by state governments. Some states do not tax capital improvements.

Source: Calculations for "Property Tax as Share of Private Capital Stock" are based on 2021 data from OECD, "Global Revenue Statistics Database: 4100 Recurrent taxes on immovable property," last updated August 2023,; and IMF, "Investment and Capital Stock Dataset: Private capital stock (current cost)," For the type of property tax and whether it is deductible, see PwC, "Worldwide Tax Summaries," (2023 data).

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