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Blog Homepage > Budget 2018

We are experts in Public Sector Finance, and that’s why we have pulled together a short guide to Budget 2018 and what it means for you.

Budget Summary

  • USC rates for lower to middle income earners to be reduced by 0.5%
  • Income Tax standard rate band to increase by €750
  • Welfare payments to increase by €5 per week
  • Pension payments to increase by €5 per week

Single Income Household  

Two married PAYE employees with two children 


  • €0 – €12,012 @ 0.5% (remains at 0.5%)
  • €12,012 – €19,372 @ 2% (cut from 2.5% and ceiling raised from €18,773 to €19,372)
  • €19,372 – €70,044 @ 4.75% (cut from 5%)
  • Medical card holders and people aged 70 and over whose total income does not exceed €60,000 will now pay a maximum USC rate of 2% (cut from 2.5%).

Income Tax – an increase of €750 in the income tax standard rate band for all earners; from €33,800 to €34,550 for single individuals and from €42,800 to €43,550 for married, single income couples.

Home Carer Tax Credit – an increase in the Home Carer Tax Credit from €1,100 to €1,200

Self-employed – an increase in the Earned Income Credit from €950 to €1,150

Mortgage Interest Relief

Scaled back extension of Mortgage Interest Relief for owner-occupiers who took out qualifying mortgages between 2004 and 2012 – 75% of the existing relief continued into 2018, 50% into 2019 and 25% into 2020. The relief will cease from 2021.

Rented Residential Property

Deduction for pre-letting expenses on a property that has been vacant for 12 months or more, up to a maximum of €5,000 per property.

Social Welfare

  • Welfare payments to increase by €5 per week
  • Christmas bonus payment of 85% to remain

Medical Prescriptions

  • Prescription charges reduced by 50 cents for all medical card holders under 70 (cut from €2.50 to €2.00).
  • Maximum monthly prescription charge cut from €25 to €20
  • Threshold for the Drugs Payment Scheme reduced from €144 to €134


  • Cigarettes – increased by 50 cents per packet
  • Sugar Tax – increased by 30 cents per litre on drinks with over 8gms of sugar in 100ml
  • Benefit-in-kind on electric vehicles at 0% for 1 year

Economy & jobs

  • 9% VAT rate for tourism and hospitality industry to remain
  • 12.5% Corporation Tax rate to remain
  • €300 million Brexit Loan Scheme for SMEs
  • Public Service Employment:
    • 800 additional Gardaí and 500 additional civilian members
    • 1,280 new teachers and 1,000 new special needs assistants
    • 1,800 additional staff in frontline services across acute, mental health, disability, primary and community care sectors.  

With over 40 years' experience in the industry, we have seen many Budgets and know how they can affect our customers. Our Consultants are highly trained experts. If you require additional advice on your finances following the Budget, specific to your situation as a Public Sector employee, you can request an appointment with an expert Cornmarket Consultant by clicking here. Alternatively, you can call us on (01) 420 6757.

Please note: there may be further changes to the above following the Finance Bill. Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided here is accurate and up-to-date (10th October 2017). The information provided is of a general nature and may not address the specific circumstances of a particular individual. Cornmarket does not accept any liability arising from any errors or omissions.