Property, lots & housing

Get the Homestead Exemption

If you own your primary residence, you are eligible for the Homestead Exemption on your real estate tax. The Homestead Exemption reduces the taxable portion of your property’s assessed value.

With this exemption, the assessed value of the property is reduced by $45,000. Most homeowners will save $629 a year on their Real Estate Tax bill.

Once we accept your application, you never have to reapply for the exemption. You will receive property tax savings every year, as long as you continue to own and live in the property.

Who

You can get this exemption for a property you own and live in. You are still eligible if you have a mortgage or are delinquent on your taxes.

Legal entities, such as trusts, are not eligible for the Homestead Exemption.

Abatements

Property owners with a 10-year residential tax abatement are not eligible. You may apply after the abatement expires. If you want to remove your abatement to get the Homestead Exemption, complete the abatement cancellation & removal form. Once an abatement is removed, it cannot be put back on the property.

Conditional exemptions

You may be eligible for a conditional Homestead Exemption if your name is not on the property’s deed. This may be because:

  • You inherited the house from a deceased relative.
  • A fraudulent mortgage or deed was recorded for your house.
  • You entered into a rent-to-own agreement and have paid all or some of the sale price for the house.

This exemption will be granted for up three years from the date of your application. Refer to the instructions below for more details on the application process, which is slightly different from the standard Homestead Exemption.

How to apply

Online

You can apply by using the online Homestead Exemption application. If a previous owner is listed, submit a paper application instead.

By phone

To apply by phone, call the Homestead Hotline at (215) 686-9200.

By mail

To apply by mail, print out and use the Homestead Exemption application. You may send your application to:

City of Philadelphia
Department of Revenue
P.O. Box 52817
Philadelphia, PA 19115

Additional instructions for the conditional Homestead Exemption

If you’re applying for a conditional Homestead Exemption, you must submit:

  • A paper application with your name on it. Write “Tangled Title” at the top of the application.
  • A completed and signed Homestead Affidavit.
  • Two forms of identification or proof of address. These documents must show your name and the address of the property you’re seeking an exemption for. We accept:
    • Government-issued ID:
      • Photo IDs issued by the U.S. federal government or the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
      • Valid U.S. passport
      • U.S. military ID
      • Government employee photo ID
    • Utility bills from within the last six months (PGW, Water, PECO, or cable)
    • Voter registration
    • Lease or rent-to-own agreement
    • Mortgage agreement

After you apply

If your application is approved, it will be reflected in OPA’s property search.

If you were approved after bills were created, the approval will not be reflected on the bill. The Homestead Exemption will be placed on your account as a credit by the Department of Revenue. You can then request a refund for the amount by filing a refund petition.

If your application is denied, the reason will be listed in the denial letter.

Filing an appeal

If you believe your application was denied incorrectly, you can appeal the decision. To appeal, mail a copy of your denial letter and a written statement asking for an appeal to the Board of Revision of Taxes (BRT).

601 Walnut St.
Suite 325 E.
Philadelphia, PA, 19106.

Requests for appeal must be filed with the BRT within 30 days of the date of your denial letter to be considered.

Cancelling your exemption

To cancel your exemption, complete the Homestead Exemption removal/change form and submit it to OPA. If you’re cancelling your exemption because your property no longer qualifies, notify OPA within 45 days of the change.

You can also use the form to change the percentage of your property used for something other than your primary residence. You must notify the OPA of this change as well.


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