Is there any property tax relief for renters?

Taxipedia is answering people’s questions about Philadelphia’s property tax reassessment.

Today’s question comes from Germantown resident Emaleigh Doley. She wants to know if there is property tax relief available for rental properties in Philadelphia.

It’s a good question. Many landlords could see their property taxes go up because of the city’s new property assessments. That means some tenants will likely get higher rent bills.

The state of Pennsylvania offers rebates for some renters: Folks who are 65 and older, widows who are 50 and older and disabled people who are 18 and older. Your annual income must be $15,000 or less to qualify.  

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The maximum rebate for renters is $650 per year. You can download an application at the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue’s website.

Also, if a landlord lives in the same property that he is leasing out, he may be eligible for a partial homestead exemption. A homestead exemption is a property tax break for people who own and occupy their houses.  

City Council doesn’t seem to be considering any additional relief measures for renters at this time.

Jane Roh, spokeswoman for Council President Darrell Clarke, said he is focused on the impact of the reassessment on property owners.

“The Council President’s office is still analyzing the new assessments,” she said. “Legislation of the kind you are proposing is a few steps ahead of where this office is now.”

When we asked mayoral spokesman Mark McDonald if Mayor Michael Nutter is eyeing any rental relief, he referred us to the state’s rebate program.

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