In December, the City of Philadelphia is mailing hundreds of thousands of Real Estate Tax bills. These taxes support local schools, parks, police and fire protection, among other services. Property owners can avoid interest and penalties by paying their taxes on time, and can even reduce taxes by paying quickly.

The early bird gets the discount

The City sends out Real Estate Tax bills by mail in December. Property owners must pay these taxes no later than March 31 of the following year.

Paying quickly has its advantages. Property owners who pay promptly won’t miss deadlines and won’t see their bill amounts increase.

Even better, those who pay their Real Estate Tax by the last day of February get a 1% discount.

Owners who don’t receive a printed bill must still pay Real Estate Taxes, and do so on time. Not paying can result in fees, a lien on the property, and even its sale.

You can always check your balance and pay online. If you have not received a bill by January 15, you can request a copy of your bill by sending an email to or calling (215) 686-6442.

Do you have a mortgage?

Your Real Estate Taxes bill may go directly to your mortgage company if you have a home mortgage loan. Most lenders set up an escrow account so that home buyers pay their Real Estate Taxes as part of regular mortgage payments.

But not all mortgages have an escrow account! If you are unsure about an escrow account, you should check with your lender.

Paying is easy, online

Property owners can pay their Real Estate Taxes by check, but can also pay online.

  • e-Check – FREE
  • Credit & debit cards – Service fee of 2.45% for payments made with credit cards. Visa debit cards have a $3.95 payment processing fee.

You can also pay over the phone at no extra charge. Call (877) 309-3710 and be ready to share your bank account and routing number.

If you can’t pay your Real Estate Taxes in full, don’t wait! Contact the Department of Revenue about entering into a payment agreement or one of the City’s assistance programs. Write an email to or call (215) 686-6442.

Photo credit: MTSOFan, Flickr