What is the difference between a primary dwelling and a secondary dwelling?

The property where you have your home at the end of the income year is your primary dwelling. This is based on the address that is registered for you in the National Registry as of 1 January of the year after the tax assessment year. If this address is wrong, the property you should be registered as living at will be used as a basis.

You can only own one primary dwelling. Any and all other dwellings you own, such as commuter or rental accommodation, are secondary dwellings.

Provided you do not own another primary dwelling, a residential property may in exceptional cases be considered a primary dwelling even if you did not have your home there at the end of the year. This applies if you are able to substantiate/document that:

  • you do not use the property as your home due to circumstances over which you have no control, e.g. your age or health, a posting, etc., and that
  • you have not let any part of the property during the period concerned. In this context, "letting" also includes cases where you allow other people, including close relatives, to use the property free of charge when they pay all or some of the running costs. (However, if close relatives use the property free of charge and you cover all the running costs, the property may still be considered your primary dwelling).