30% incentive scheme ignores estate agents


Staff Writer

REAL estate agents will not benefit from the 30% incentive scheme introduced last week by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) for the construction sector.



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The central bank said the real estate sector comprised of all those engaged in real estate business as dealers, developers, operators and agents.



Others deriving their income from the sale and letting of houses, flats, garages and other fixed property were excluded from the 30% RBZ scheme.


The RBZ said there were several others who would not benefit from the 30% incentive such as mining houses, manufacturing and commercial investment houses and some financial institutions.


Last month the RBZ told estate agents that they could no longer charge or peg their properties in foreign currency.


This was despite having been given the go-ahead last year by former RBZ governor Leonard Tsumba in a letter to the estate agents’ president.


The leasing and selling of property had become a hot potato especially in Harare where landlords were selling and leasing their houses in foreign currency and then reselling the hard cash on the parallel market.


While the Zimbabwe dollar was officially pegged at $824 against the United States greenback, landlords were receiving as much as $7 000 on the parallel market.


Properties were being advertised for sums ranging from US$20 000 to US$200 000.