Have you registered your home for the Maryland Homestead Tax Credit?
If not, you have only a few hours left; the deadline to do so is today, Monday, Dec. 31, 2012.
The Homestead Credit limits the potential increase in taxable property assessments to 10 percent or less each year. Applying for the credit would prevent you from having to pay taxes on any increase above that 10 percent cap.
The Department of Taxation and Assessments website offers the following example:
Assume that your old assessment was $100,000 and that your new phased-in assessment for the 1st year is $120,000. An increase of 10% would result in an assessment of $110,000. The difference between $120,000 and $110,000 is $10,000. The tax credit would apply to the taxes due on the $10,000. If the tax rate was $1.04 per $100 of assessed value, the tax credit would be $104 ($10,000 ÷ 100 x $1.04).
If you had not applied for the homestead tax credit, you would be responsible for the taxes on the full increased amount.
The credit used to happen automatically, but due to abuse, a law was enacted in 2007 to prevent owners from applying for rental or multiple properties.
If you are not sure if you have registered your home, you can follow these steps to apply for the credit:
- Visit the Maryland Department of Taxation and Assessments' Real Property Data Search database
- Select your county
- Select Street Address
- Enter your street number
- Enter your street name only (no need for lane, drive, street, etc.)
- Review the state assessment data on your property, including information at the very bottom entitled Homestead Application Information
- If this section says “approved” you do not need to do anything further. If it says “No application," you should apply for the credit immediately
- Download & complete PDF of the application
- Submit the application online, via fax to 410-225-9344 or U.S. mail to:
Homestead Tax Credit Division
301 West Preston Street, 8th Floor
Baltimore MD 21201
Applications must be postmarked by Dec. 31, 2012.
More information can be found on the state's website at http://www.dat.state.md.us/sdatweb/homestead.html.