The Philadelphia Department of Revenue will prevent your Real Estate Tax bill from increasing if you meet certain age and income requirements.
Under the Real Estate Tax freeze, the amount of property tax you pay each year will not increase, even if your property assessment or the tax rate changes. If your tax liability decreases due to a lower property assessment or a tax rate decrease, the amount of Real Estate Tax you owe will also be lowered to the new amount.
Applicants must meet both age and income requirements to be found eligible for a Real Estate Tax freeze.
For purposes of this program, an eligible senior is someone who meets any of the following descriptions:
- A person aged 65 years or older;
- A person who lives in the same household with a spouse who is aged 65 years or older; or
- A person aged 50 years or older who is a widow of someone who reached the age of 65 before passing away.
Eligible applicant(s) will have a total income of:
- $33,500 or less for a single person; or
- $41,500 or less for a married couple.
For senior citizens who live in a Cooperative Property
Eligible senior citizens living in cooperative buildings may enroll in the program. If you are an eligible senior, you must complete a special “COOP APPLICATION”, and follow a process that involves sharing your enrollment status with your building’s property management.
See the Forms & instructions section for a COOP APPLICATION.
For senior citizens who were eligible in a prior year
If you meet the age, income, and residency qualifications in any year from 2018 to 2023, your application will apply for the first year you were eligible. Use the current application and follow the instructions.
You will need to provide proof of income for the first year you are eligible. If you have a Real Estate Tax balance from a prior year, it will be adjusted to reflect the new frozen tax amount. Applicants are not eligible for a refund for Real Estate Taxes paid in prior years.
Applying for the tax freeze
1. The fastest and easiest way to apply is online through the “Search for a property” link on the Philadelphia Tax Center’s homepage, under the “Property” panel. You don’t need to create a username and password to submit your application electronically.
2. Download and complete an application form, including the section on household income.
3. Gather documentation that proves age and income eligibility for yourself and/or your spouse, whichever is applicable.
Examples of proof of age include:
- Birth certificates.
- Marriage certificates.
- Driver’s licenses.
- Social Security award letters.
Any document that clearly shows a date of birth will be accepted for consideration.
Examples of proof of income include, but are not limited to:
- Social Security (SSA, SSDI, SSI) award letters
- Pension statements
- Bank Statements
- Retirement income or Rental Income Statements
- Interest and dividends
- Pay stubs from your current employer
- W-2 or state/federal tax return – Salary and wages of Taxpayer and Spouse
- Unemployment/Workers compensation statements or award letters
- Child support and alimony
- Any other documentation you may have.
3. Make copies of your documentation. Do not send original documents; only photocopies will be accepted.
4. Mail your application and proof of age to: