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Real Estate Tax Exemptions - What you should know?

Published 3/1/2018

Every year when we help people sell their homes, as a part of that process, we review their property taxes. We find that many of our clients do not have the correct tax exemptions for which they are entitled. If you qualify and apply for a tax exemption, your real estate taxes will decrease. The three most common exemptions for real estate are the residential exemption, senior exemption, and senior freeze.

To qualify for an exemption, the following must apply:

  1. Residential Exemption: In order to qualify for the homestead exemption you must occupy the property as your principle residence and either own the property or have an equitable legal estate on the 1st of January of the year.
  2. Senior Exemption: You must qualify for the residential exemption and have reached 65 years of age during the tax year. This means if you turn 65 years old on December 25, 2017 you can apply it to the 2017 tax year.
  3. Senior Freeze: You must qualify for the senior exemption and have a household income less than $55,000.00. This maximum household income will increase to $65,000.00 for the 2018 tax year.

If you wish to check if the correct exemptions applied to your property, call us, and for no fee we will look up your property if it is located in DuPage, Cook, Kane, or Lake Counties. The easiest way to look up the property is by parcel identification number (PIN). If able, please provide us the PIN for your property, or we may be able to find the property by address. If we find your property did not have the correct exemptions, we may be able to apply past exemptions and get you a refund. We will also help to confirm all exemptions are properly apply to your home. We will charge a small fee to fix exemption issues.

To clarify, real estate taxes are issued and paid in arrears. This means the taxes for the 2018 tax year are issued in 2019. Therefore if you qualify for an exemption in 2018, you will not see this reflected until you receive a tax bill in 2019.

If you have any questions on any real estate matter, please contact our office.


This content of this blog is intended for informational purposes only. It is not intended to solicit business or to provide legal advice. Laws differ by jurisdiction, and the information on this blog may not apply to every reader. You should not take, or refrain from taking, any legal action based upon the information contained on this blog without first seeking professional counsel.

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