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Homestead Exemption

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NEWS
March 1, 2013
HAVE YOU APPLIED for the homestead exemption? If you're a homeowner, you have until July 31 to do so. The homestead will reduce your assessment by $30,000, although the amount of the exemption is subject to change. Visit http://ph.ly/exemption to fill out a form online, or call the Office of Property Assessment at 215-686-9200 or 3-1-1 to apply over the phone. You can also mail it in. Also ask about other forms of tax relief, like installment plans and tax freezes for seniors, by calling 215-686-6442 or visit http://ph.ly/revenue . - Jan Ransom
NEWS
February 22, 2013 | BY ISAIAH THOMPSON, AxisPhilly.org
WINNERS AND losers" - it's a phrase heard often on the floor of City Council, especially when it comes to taxes. The phrase peppered the debate last summer over the city's move to the Actual Value Initiative as Council grappled with questions over who stood to gain most or be hurt by the citywide reassessment. The phrase has come around again as Council works to put the finishing touches on AVI, including the so-called homestead exemption, which forgives taxes up to $30,000 for resident homeowners.
NEWS
March 1, 2013 | BY JAN RANSOM, Daily News Staff Writer ransomj@phillynews.com, 215-854-5218
MORE THAN 100,000 homeowners, including huge clusters in some of the city's poorest areas, haven't gotten the message about the homestead exemption, a relief measure that could save them hundreds of dollars a year under the city's new property-tax system. The problem is particularly acute in some of the city's predominantly Hispanic neighborhoods - partly because the brochures, ads and mailers on which the city spent $414,000 were only in English. The information about the exemption, which would lower a home's taxable value under the Actual Value Initiative by $30,000, was translated into several languages, but those versions were available only online.
NEWS
April 19, 2013 | BY JAN RANSOM, Daily News Staff Writer ransomj@phillynews.com, 215-854-5218
WITH JUST A little more than two months left for Philadelphia homeowners to turn in their homestead applications, City Council is concerned that hundreds of thousands of eligible applicants - mostly in the city's poorest neighborhoods - may not make the July 31 deadline. "The worst thing that could happen is we get to the July 31 deadline and we have a significant number of people who have not applied," said Council President Darrell Clarke. "That could be problematic for people in our districts.
NEWS
November 7, 1997
Before the vote, one Harrisburg lawmaker hoped it would prove to be "the collective kick in the pants . . . to do something about tax reform. " From the looks of the outcome Tuesday, that's what Pennsylvania voters meant to deliver when they handily approved a referendum to begin the process of lowering property taxes. Now it's time to see whether state lawmakers really feel your pain. The referendum only set the stage for property tax relief. It altered the state constitution to enable school districts and municipalities to give residential property owners a tax break - the so-called homestead exemption.
NEWS
February 20, 2000 | By Anthony R. Wood, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Two years ago, the Tax Revolution That Wasn't began in Pennsylvania. After decades of debate, the legislature passed a bill that could free taxpayers from the tyranny of the property-tax system, long reviled as arcane and unfair. Under the new Homestead Exemption, school districts would have unprecedented power to reinvent the way they raise money. They could slash real estate and nuisance levies and replace them with taxes on wages or business profits, thus shifting the burden onto the people who make the most money.
NEWS
May 3, 2013 | BY JAN RANSOM, Daily News Staff Writer ransomj@phillynews.com, 215-854-5218
AS CITY COUNCIL took a step toward extending the deadline to apply for the homestead exemption under the city's new property-tax system, the Nutter administration said yesterday it plans to step up outreach efforts, including sending home information about the exemption with students' report cards. Council gave preliminary approval to two bills yesterday, including one sponsored by Council President Darrell Clarke that would extend the deadline to apply for the exemption - from July 31 to Sept.
NEWS
March 29, 2013
* To find what your tax bill might be next year, go to avicalculator.phila.gov . * If you own your house, you may be eligible for a tax break called the homestead exemption, which would lower the taxable value of your home. Go to phila.gov/opa to apply. The deadline is July 31. * If you think the city overestimated your home's value, the deadline to file an informal appeal of your assessment is Sunday. Go to the same site listed above. * Mayor Nutter has proposed a 1.32 percent property-tax rate and a $15,000 homestead exemption.
NEWS
September 5, 2014 | BY MICHELE TRANQUILLI, Daily News Staff Writer tranqum@phillynews.com, 215-854-2348
THE DEADLINE to apply for a homestead exemption on your property taxes is Sept. 13, yet thousands of Philadelphia homeowners have not applied and may miss out on big savings. If you're unfamiliar with the tax break, here are some answers: Q: What is a homestead exemption? A: The homestead exemption shaves $30,000 off the assessed value of your property and your tax bill is calculated from the lower amount. With the exemption, a house assessed at $100,000 in Philadelphia, for example, would be taxed on only $70,000, reducing the tax bill from $1,340 to $938.
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NEWS
September 5, 2014 | BY MICHELE TRANQUILLI, Daily News Staff Writer tranqum@phillynews.com, 215-854-2348
THE DEADLINE to apply for a homestead exemption on your property taxes is Sept. 13, yet thousands of Philadelphia homeowners have not applied and may miss out on big savings. If you're unfamiliar with the tax break, here are some answers: Q: What is a homestead exemption? A: The homestead exemption shaves $30,000 off the assessed value of your property and your tax bill is calculated from the lower amount. With the exemption, a house assessed at $100,000 in Philadelphia, for example, would be taxed on only $70,000, reducing the tax bill from $1,340 to $938.
NEWS
April 2, 2014 | BY CHRIS BRENNAN, Daily News Staff Writer brennac@phillynews.com, 215-854-5973
A COMMONWEALTH COURT judge has rejected a residency challenge that sought to knock state Rep. Pam DeLissio off the May 20 Democratic primary-election ballot in the 194th District. Senior Judge Rochelle Friedman ruled yesterday that DeLissio's "domicile" is her Philadelphia home, even though the two-term legislator listed her Harrisburg town house as her "primary residence" in 2009 for a homestead exemption that granted her a small property-tax discount. "It is well settled that a candidate's place of residence for purposes of the Election Code is 'the residence . . . in which his [or her]
NEWS
March 28, 2014 | BY CHRIS BRENNAN, Daily News Staff Writer brennac@phillynews.com, 215-854-5973
ON PAPER, it may look like state Rep. Pam DeLissio moved back to Philadelphia on Tuesday. That's the day DeLissio renounced a homestead exemption on a townhouse she has owned near Harrisburg since 2006, paying back the $341 in property taxes she had saved there in the last five years. She also transferred her driver's license, car registration and insurance from there to her other home in Philadelphia. The question now before a judge: Was that too little too late for DeLissio to stay on the May 20 primary-election ballot?
NEWS
March 20, 2014 | BY CHRIS BRENNAN, Daily News Staff Writer brennac@phillynews.com, 215-854-5973
LEGAL CHALLENGES were filed yesterday to knock a dozen Philadelphia candidates for the state House from the May 20 Democratic primary-election ballot. The challenges include: * A voter in state Rep. Brendan Boyle's 170th District in Northeast Philly claims that 833 of the 1,052 signatures he submitted are invalid. State representatives need 300 valid voter signatures to qualify for the ballot. Voter Michelle Szydlowski's filing claims that 833 of the signatures were on pages notarized by Boyle's assistant chief of staff, Nicholas Himebaugh, violating a state law that says a notary can't have a direct or "pecuniary" interest in the transaction.
NEWS
February 4, 2014 | BY SEAN COLLINS WALSH & MICHELE TRANQUILLI, Daily News Staff Writer walshSE@phillynews.com, 215-854-4172
MORE THAN a thousand ineligible property owners may have applied for and received tax breaks intended for Philly homeowners, according to a Daily News analysis of city databasesR. Mayor Nutter's Actual Value Initiative reform effort, intended to get the city's deeply flawed tax assessments back in order, had the effect of shifting part of the overall tax burden from commercial properties to residential. To ease the transition for families, lawmakers created the Homestead Exemption, which deducts $30,000 off the city's assessment of houses occupied by their owners.
NEWS
September 10, 2013 | By Troy Graham, Inquirer Staff Writer
PHILADELPHIA The new property tax system that took effect in Philadelphia over the summer was supposed to be relatively painless for the majority of homeowners, as long as they took advantage of the tax breaks offered. But many are not taking advantage. The deadline to apply for one of the breaks - the homestead exemption, open to every homeowner in a primary residence - is Friday, with about a third of eligible homeowners yet to sign up. The other tax break, so-called gentrification relief for longtime homeowners in fast-growing areas of the city, has been held up because state legislators did not pass a critical bill to implement it. City and state officials expect the bill to pass shortly after lawmakers return from their recess this month.
NEWS
September 6, 2013 | BY JAN RANSOM, Daily News Staff Writer ransomj@phillynews.com, 215-854-5218
HEY, PHILLY homeowners: Have you applied for your homestead exemption? If not, you better hurry. The deadline is Sept. 13. The exemption would lower a home's taxable value by $30,000 and provide some much-needed relief to homeowners who may see an increase to their tax bills under the Actual Value Initiative, the city's new property-tax system. Under the recently approved 1.34 percent property-tax rate, a home valued at $100,000 with a homestead would have a $938 tax bill; a $200,000 value would mean a $2,278 tax bill.
NEWS
June 14, 2013 | BY JAN RANSOM, Daily News Staff Writer ransomj@phillynews.com, 215-854-5218
PHILADELPHIA homeowners can finally figure out what their tax bill will be under the Actual Value Initiative, the city's new property-tax system. City Council approved a 1.34 percent property-tax rate yesterday and a homestead exemption that would knock $30,000 from a homeowner's assessment. The bill passed 11-5 with Council members Kenyatta Johnson, Bill Green, Mark Squilla, Brian O'Neill and David Oh voting against it. Councilwoman Marian Tasco was absent. "With the setting of the new property-tax rate and the homestead exemption, Philadelphia has entered a new era of fair, accurate and understandable property-tax assessments," mayoral spokesman Mark McDonald said.
NEWS
June 7, 2013 | By Troy Graham, Inquirer Staff Writer
For more than a year, the dominant question in City Hall has been where the property-tax rate should be set after a citywide reassessment and the overhaul of the property-tax system. Council stepped closer to settling that Wednesday, moving a bill out of committee that would set the rate under Mayor Nutter's Actual Value Initiative (AVI) at 1.34 percent. The bill also includes a $30,000 homestead exemption. In his March budget address, Nutter proposed a $15,000 homestead exemption, which meant the rate would have been lower, at 1.3204.
NEWS
May 3, 2013 | By Troy Graham, Inquirer Staff Writer
A Philadelphia City Council committee unanimously approved two bills Wednesday - one that would extend until mid-September the deadline for homeowners to apply for the homestead exemption, and one that would allow people who buy homes after the new deadline to apply as well. The city had received more than 287,000 homestead applications by mid-April and approved more than 192,000, Finance Director Rob Dubow said. An estimated 340,000 homeowners are eligible for the exemption, which deducts a set amount from a property's assessment before the tax rate is applied.
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