Yes. The relief comes in several forms.
First, there is an exemption for widows, widowers and totally disabled persons. For qualified people, the exemption has the effect of reducing the assessed value of the real property by up to $3,000 with a corresponding reduction in property tax.
Second, there is a program of tax deferral. Under the deferral program, payment of property taxes is not required until the real property is sold or the person dies or the property becomes income producing.
Third, under Proposition 104, which passed in 2000, qualified individuals are granted a property tax freeze.
Where does a Senior apply for an exemption or freeze?
Apply at the office of your county tax assessor.
What are the requirements to obtain an exemption? CLICK HERE
What are the requirements to obtain a deferral? - CLICK HERE
What are the requirements to obtain a property valuation freeze? - CLICK HERE
Property tax exemptions are available to many homeowners, but you'll need to do some legwork to find them and lower your property tax bill.
If you own a home, you may have noticed that your property taxes have been going up over the past couple of years. In the current economy, this can be a devastating burden, especially for those on a fixed income. If you are a homeowner, you should make sure you are applying for all of the property tax exemptions available to you, including senior exemptions.
In the United States, property tax on real estate is usually levied by local government, at the municipal or county level. Many of these municipalities will provide property tax exemptions or other forms of tax help for older homeowners. Below are some examples of the exemptions you might be eligible for and how to go about locating them.
Elderly or Senior Tax Exemptions:
A Senior or Elderly tax exemption essentially lowers the amount of property tax the property owner pays each year, and each municipality will have its own method for providing the exemption. Most commonly, the exemption will provide tax relief by reducing the equalized valuation of the property. In essence, the property owner would be paying taxes on a discounted value of the property.
Elderly or Senior Tax Freeze Exemptions:
Municipalities may also have programs that "freeze" the assessed property valuation, thus allowing the property owner to pay property taxes each year based on a previous and consistent valuation.
Property Tax Deferral Programs:
These programs are typically directed toward low-income elderly homeowners who are unable to pay a large portion (or all) of their property tax. Deferral programs are tax-relief programs that work like loans. They allow qualified seniors to defer all or part of their taxes and special assessments on their primary homes. The loan from the state is then paid back when the property is sold or transferred to an heir.
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