Reader question: Is there any way I could find out what proportion of the taxe foncière on our home is taken for a swimming pool? In the past three years, our pool has been covered and unused so I wonder if it is possible to get a reduction of tax.
Having a pool does, indeed, increase the valeur locative of a property and this figure is used to work out the level of taxe foncière due.
This valeur locative is calculated by the Centre des Impôts Fonciers, usually situated in the same town as the prefecture. The precise degree to which the inclusion of a pool will increase it could be in the range of 10-30% but it depends on the area in which you are and a number of other factors such as its size and surroundings.
Accordingly, a pool in the south would increase the valeur more than a pool in, say, the north west, because of the difference in the weather and therefore ability for use.
As for reductions for not using it, there are none. If you own one, you are taxed on it. The only means to stop paying local taxes on a pool is to fill it in and make it unusable.