Crossville Chronicle, Crossville, TN

Area News

April 26, 2012

Tax relief available for low-income seniors, others

CROSSVILLE — Property tax relief is available for low-income elderly and totally and permanently disabled persons. The state will reimburse all or part of the taxes paid by such people on owner-occupied residential property. The tax relief applies to the first $25,000 of the home's full market value. Property owners must meet maximum income requirements set each year in the state's General Appropriations Act.

The state also provides state-reimbursed tax relief to severely disabled veterans and their surviving spouses on the first $175,000 of the full market value of their homes, regardless of annual total income.

Municipalities and counties can also approve a local option tax relief measure, freezing property tax on elderly homeowner's primary residence.

Under this program, which has not been approved locally, taxes would be frozen at the "base tax," the amount due in the year the taxpayer becomes eligible for the program and successfully applies. Improvements made after the tax base is established would increase the taxes owed, however.

To qualify for a freeze, taxpayers must be 65 years of age. The income of the senior when combined with the income of any other owners of the residence must be below the average median household income and the state tax relief income limit. In Cumberland County, the 2011 income limit was $35,160. The freeze would only apply to lots five acres or less in size.

Seniors would have to apply annually in order to receive the freeze, and applications would be made to the tax collecting official.

 

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