If you purchased or sold a home in 2016, you’ll want to read this and discover your tax advantages of home ownership.
Soon, you will be preparing your Income Tax Return for 2016. You will need a copy of your home’s closing statement to make some of the calculations. These statements sometimes get mixed up with other important papers that go in a safety deposit box so make sure to reach out to your Realtor or the Closing Attorney to get the Closing Disclosure if you cannot find your copy.
You are probably aware that interest on the qualifying mortgage and property taxes paid on the home are tax deductible. However, sometimes other legitimate expenses are overlooked. It is helpful to know what things to supply your accountant, so that all legitimate deductions may be taken. If you have a question about any of these, you should rely on the counsel of your tax professional.
One of the other tax advantages to being a home owner and is the Homestead Exemption.
WHAT IS THE HOMESTEAD EXEMPTION?
Each County Government gives certain exemptions to its citizens which are applied against the property tax assessment to lower the real property tax bill. The Homestead exemption is one of the exemptions given. The requirements to obtain the Basic Homestead exemption are as follows:
1) You must own the property as your legal resident on January 1st of 2016;
2) Filing is only required once, not every year;
3) You must occupy the property as your principal residence:
4) You must have all cars owned by you registered in the county where you are filing;
5) You or your spouse cannot be claiming homestead in another city, county or state.
NOTE THE FOLLOWING:
• Other Exemptions are available in some counties for Senior Citizens and Disabled Persons:
• If in the future you change the way title to the property is held in any way you must refile homestead.
WHAT YOU NEED TO FILE:
• Homeowner Name
• Property Address
• Parcel ID #
City of Decatur / DeKalb County – you must file online with both the City and the County. The City deadline is April 1, 2017. It saves approximately $20,000 off your assessed value. File with the County by April 1, 2017, and it will take about 2/3rds off the County portion of the tax bill.
DeKalb County Unincorporated – File online by April 1, 2017. This should take about 1/3rd off the tax bill.
City of Atlanta / DeKalb County – File online with the County by April 1, 2017 only. It will automatically file with the City. This saves you about $30,000 off your total assessed value and about 2/3rds off your County portion.
City of Atlanta / Fulton County – File with the County by April 1, 2017. It will automatically file with the City. This saves you about $30,000 off your assessed value with City and about $10,000 off your assessed value with the County; it’s worth the effort!
You have two options for Fulton County – follow the previous link and fill everything out online (be sure to hit submit), OR, you can print out the Application for Basic Homestead Exemption and mail or hand-deliver to the address listed on the form.
Cobb County – due by April 1, 2017
City of Marietta – due by April 1, 2017
This will literally take you 5 minutes to complete – take advantage of some down time and knock this out before the new year really starts to take off.