Identifying vacant properties for the purpose of imposing a tax on them would be a particular challenge, a report by the Tax Strategy Group finds.

The TSG paper, which examines property related tax issues including the concept of a vacant property tax, concludes that were it to be introduced, the levy should apply nationwide and not just to specific urban areas.

The analysis concludes that it would not be appropriate to limit the geographic scope of such a tax and states officials are working on that assumption.

The report finds that overall, property vacancy levels are low in Ireland and in line with a fully functioning housing market.

"The categories and duration of vacancy suggesting that vacancy is predominately short-term, with the most common reason being refurbishment," it says.

The paper finds that the objective of any tax imposition would be to increase the supply of housing for rent or purchase to complement the Government's strategy to maximise use of existing housing stock, rather than to raise Revenue.

"In any case, if a tax on vacant residential property was introduced with appropriate exemptions in place, it is estimated that the yield would be modest, applying to a narrow base of taxpayers," it says.

As a result, it concludes that the rationale for introducing a vacant property tax lies in how effective it would be in encouraging owners of long-term vacant residential properties to either sell, rent or otherwise occupy their properties.

"Consideration must be given to what rate of tax would be appropriate to achieve the desired behavioural change and intended policy aim," it suggests.

The TSG also says that consideration must also be given to various design elements such as the scope including appropriate exemptions, assessment, compliance including the role of other State agencies, and rate.

"A particular challenge in successfully imposing a tax on a vacant property will be the identification of vacant properties," it claims.

The matter is to be further considered by officials in the Department of Finance this summer, the report says, as part of its commitment under the Government's Housing for All plan.

Regarding the Help to Buy Scheme, the TSG says its future beyond its current sunset date is a matter that will have to be considered by Government as part of the budget process, once it receives a finalised independent report on the topic.

The TSG analysis also details how at this point in time, the estimated overall yield from property tax this year is €467m for the year.

However, it adds that this is expected to increase once mandatory deductions and other compliance measures are put in place over the coming months.