From our friends at Shumaker, Loop & Kendrick, LLP

By: | February 18, 2021

“Our firm is seeing a fair number of instances where clients have contiguous lots to their primary residence and are unaware that you can qualify for the residential 4% property tax assessment on your primary residence and up to 5 contiguous acres (in addition to other dwellings occupied by immediate family members on the contiguous lots).  The refund window is 2 years from the property tax payment deadline (Jan. 15).  While the residential property tax benefit is well known, clients are indicating that their real estate attorneys have not informed them of this substantial benefit for contiguous properties.  It is critical to file in a timely manner and ensure that all of the ownership requirements etc. are met.  We have had several situations recently where the clients were paying the 6%  property tax assessment and received refunds in excess of $50,000 in addition to the benefit of paying approximately 33% of the property tax amount moving forward.  Please keep in mind that the 4% property tax assessment for primary residences by law (Act 388) does not include school district operating funds, so the property tax savings are substantial and even lower than the reduction of the 6% to 4% assessment itself.   In one instance, the client had owned a lot on each side of their residence in excess of 10 years (leaving 8+ years of property tax benefit on the table after taking eligible refunds into account).”