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Deadline Looms for Philadelphia Real Estate Tax Relief

July 2, 2012
By: Kevin S. Koscil

A “Homestead Exemption” is available to all Philadelphia homeowners who qualify and submit a simple application before July 31, 2012. This is a valuable benefit that reduces the assessed value of eligible primary residences, thus reducing the homeowner’s Philadelphia Real Estate Tax burden. The exemption will only become available once enabling legislation is passed by the Commonwealth and an ordinance is enacted by the City. Nevertheless, applications must be submitted by the homeowner by July 31.

To qualify, applicants must own a home in Philadelphia and establish it as their primary residence (vacation and rental properties do not qualify). Applicants must also complete a one-page application.  That is all.

All homeowners may apply for the exemption, regardless of age or income level. 

The relief will take effect for the 2013 tax year and will remain in place for each year thereafter, without the need for further action, with two exceptions: (1) reapplication is required upon a change to the deed to the home; and (2) the taxpayer must notify the Office of Property Assessment upon a change in the home’s use to something other than a primary residence.

The application can be found here. Applications can also be completed online (then printed and mailed) by visiting All applications for the 2013 tax year must be received by July 31, 2012. Those received after the deadline will be considered for the 2014 tax year. 

If you would like to discuss this tax benefit, or have any other tax or estate planning questions, please contact Kevin Koscil (215.864.6827/, Scott Borsack (215.864.7048/, Bill Hussey (215.864.6257/, or Suzanne Prybella (215.864.7188/

IRS Circular 230 Notice: To ensure compliance with certain regulations promulgated by the U.S. Internal Revenue Service, we inform you that any federal tax advice contained in this communication (including any attachments) is not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, by any taxpayer for the purpose of (1) avoiding tax-related penalties under the U.S. Internal Revenue Code, or (2) promoting, marketing or recommending to another party any tax-related matters addressed herein, unless expressly stated otherwise.

This correspondence should not be construed as legal advice or legal opinion on any specific facts or circumstances. The contents are intended for general informational purposes only, and you are urged to consult a lawyer concerning your own situation and legal questions.
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