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Valuation services are an essential part of local government administration in Zimbabwe. The Valuation Section, under the Department of the Chamber Secretary and headed by the City Valuer, is responsible for valuing properties for various purposes. The Urban Councils Act Chapter 29:15 provides the enabling legislature for the creation of the valuation office.

The functions of the office include the valuation of all properties for rating purposes, Council properties for insurance, Council properties for letting purposes, private properties for acquisition (including compulsory), Council properties for sale (including stands), estimation of building costs, conducting auctions on behalf of Council including stray animals, conducting site inspections for compliance with respect to conditions and terms of sale of Council stands.

The General Valuation Roll is a list/register of properties situated within the boundaries of a given local authority compiled for rating purposes. The lifespan of a Valuation Roll is between three and ten years. However, the period can be extended by a further five years subject to Ministerial consent by a statutory instrument. All properties within Council are ratable except property owned by the state, property owned by Council, and property exempt from paying rates under Section 270 of the Urban Councils Act.

The current rates applicable to classes of land are as follows: 

Residential Land: 

  • High-density: USD 6.80 per square meter (excluding VAT), average stand size of 200 m2, 1st 200m2 at full rate, balance at half rate. 
  • Medium-density: USD 7.00 per square meter (excluding VAT), average stand size of 600m2, 1st 600m2 at full rate, balance at half rate. 
  • Low-density: USD 7.50 per square meter (excluding VAT), average stand size of 1,200m2, 1st 1,200m2 at full rate, balance at half rate. 

Industrial Land: 

  • Light industry: USD 4.00 per square meter (excluding VAT), average stand size of 2,000m2, 1st 2,000m2 at USD 4.00, balance at half rate. 
  • Heavy industry: USD 5.00 per square meter (excluding VAT), average stand size of 4,000m2, 1st 4,000m2 at USD 5.00, balance at half rate. 

Commercial Bays: 

These attract a flat rate of USD 15.00 per square meter. 

Plan fees are payable at a rate of 1% of the total estimated cost of the construction. It must be noted that Council rates are subsidized and account for approximately a quarter of the actual costs.  

Visit the Bulawayo City Council website on the link below for more information 

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