Homestead tax exemption period now open
Information by the Franklin County Auditor
More than 63,500 Franklin County homeowners are taking advantage of the homestead tax exemption. Those residents saved a combined $36 million in 2014.
The homestead exemption is a statewide program, administered here in Franklin County by Auditor Clarence Mingo, which allows qualified senior citizens and permanently and totally disabled homeowners to reduce their property tax burden by shielding some of the market value of their home from taxation.
The exemption, which takes the form of a credit on property tax bills, allows qualifying homeowners to exempt $25,000 of the market value of their homes from all local property taxes. For example, an eligible owner of a home with a market value of $100,000 will be billed as if the home were valued at $75,000.
Beginning with the 2014 tax year, the state of Ohio returned to the originally approved system of applying means/income testing to determine eligibility for the homestead exemption; and added an additional classification of recipient, disabled veteran, which allows for an increased reduction of $50,000.
To qualify for the senior and disabled persons homestead exemption, a homeowner must:
- Own and occupy the home as their primary place of residence as of January 1 of the year for which they apply; and
- Be 65 years of age, or turn 65, by December 31 of the year for which they apply; or
Be totally and permanently disabled as of January 1 of the year for which they apply, as certified by a licensed physician or psychologist; or
Be the surviving spouse of a person who was receiving the homestead exemption at the time of death and where the surviving spouse was at least 59 years old on the date of death.
- Have a total income (for both the applicant and the applicant’s spouse) that does not exceed the amount set by the law, which is adjusted annually for inflation. “Total income” is defined as the adjusted gross income for Ohio income tax purposes. The current maximum allowed is $31,000 for the 2015 application period.
Those homeowners who already receive the homestead exemption do not need to reapply every year. However, if your circumstances change you must notify our office. A continuing homestead exemption application is sent each year to those homeowners who received the reduction for the preceding tax year. Please return this form only if there have been changes in eligibility status, e.g. you no longer own the home, no longer occupy it as your primary place of residence, or if your disability status has changed.
If you are not already a homestead tax exemption qualifier but believe you should be, please apply by Monday, June 1.
These reductions were created as a benefit for homeowners who live in Ohio and make it their permanent residence. To qualify for either the owner-occupied reduction or the homestead exemption for seniors or the disabled, a homeowner must own and occupy the homestead as their primary domicile as of January 1 of the tax year. A homeowner and his/her spouse are entitled to claim a reduction on one property only.
Should you have further questions and/or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact our office at 614-525-3240 or email us at ClarenceMingo@franklincountyohio.gov.