Property Tax Relief Programs In The State Of Maine
Property tax is a financial burden to many and some towns have it worse than others. The state of Maine has created various programs that provide home and land owners with some relief. Each town assesses your Property tax based on what they consider to be the “fair market value” of your home. What is “fair market value” you ask? It is the price a willing buyer and seller will agree on in a competitive and open market without any undue pressure. I will discuss property assessments, mil rate, and calculations of property tax in a future post.
Current Land Use Programs – There are currently four “current use” programs which assist in lowering the homes assessed value:
- Farmland trust
- Open Space
- Working Waterfront
- Tree Growth
The qualifying criteria and program structure can change at any time. Any future change of the land use could result in disqualification and penalties. This would ultimately affect your property tax payment liability. The State has created this very informative Power Point presentation to help you understand the process and criteria. Applications are due by April 1st, click here to apply online.
Property Tax Exemptions – There are certain types of property that are fully exempt from property tax such as religious, government, and schools. Then there are those classes that receive partial exemption:
- Homestead Exemption – This program offers an exemption of $15,000, which applies to your assessed value. Your ownership must have been continuous for the year prior to applying and the home you occupy as of April 1st must be your permanent residence. Apply online
- Veteran Exemption – This program offers a $6,000 exemption for those that have served during a specific war period, is 62 years or older, or is receiving 100% disability as a war veteran, or was disabled during service. This application must be submitted by April 1. Apply online
- Paraplegic Veteran – May be eligible for a $50,000 exemption if you received a grant for specially adapted housing. Apply online
- Blind Exemption – If you are legally blind you will receive a $4,000 exemption. Apply online
Business Equipment Tax Exemption and Reimbursement Programs
- These programs are designed to provide property tax relief for eligible business equipment and certain business property. More information
Property Tax Fairness Credit – Eligible Maine residents can claim this tax credit on the Maine individual Tax Form 1040ME. You must have been a Maine resident during the tax year, owned or rented a home as your primary residence, paid property tax or rent on that home, and meet the income requirements. 2015 Form
If you need further assistance with calculations and/or tax advice please consult a reputable accountant for guidance.