Sinn Féin spokesperson on Finance, Pearse Doherty TD, has this morning commented on the opening of the Mortgage Interest Tax Relief.
The Donegal TD warned that as the relief will not operate at source, and with 138,000 households who have seen their mortgage costs rise locked out of the scheme, many taxpayers who have suffered from rising interest rates will not receive relief.
Speaking this morning, Teachta Doherty said:
“From today qualifying households will be able to claim Mortgage Interest Tax Relief.
“It is clear that there would be no form of mortgage interest relief in place without sustained campaigning from Sinn Féin for well over a year.
“But instead of implementing Sinn Féin’s proposal, the government belatedly introduced a scheme that will lock out tens of thousands of households from much needed support.
“Figures released to me by the Department of Finance show that 137,800 mortgage holders will be locked out of this relief despite their mortgage interest rates and costs having risen.
“Since October 2022, Sinn Féin had called on the government to introduce targeted mortgage interest relief to support struggling households with soaring interest costs.
“Our proposal would have seen households receive support of up to €1,500 to help them with these rising costs – this relief would have been provided at source, meaning immediate relief for households without the need to file income tax returns to avail of it.
“For months the government rejected and opposed our proposal to support workers and families with rising interest rates, only to perform a U-Turn on Budget Day with a tax relief that will provide less support than Sinn Féin’s proposal while locking tens of thousands of struggling households out of the relief.
“Under this tax relief, households will also be required to file an income tax return to avail of the Mortgage Interest Tax Relief scheme, unlike the previous form of mortgage interest relief which was applied at source.
“This could result in many households who are eligible for the relief not receiving it.
“We are deeply concerned, as a result of the government’s delays and the unfair restrictions that apply, that hundreds of thousands of households that have suffered from soaring mortgage costs will receive no support under the Mortgage Interest Tax Relief scheme.”