Senior Citizens 65 years of age or older, who are struggling with property taxes, can defer payment of their property taxes until their homes or condominiums are sold. According to Riverside Township Assessor, Fran Sitkiewicz, the Senior Citizen Tax Deferral Program allows seniors to defer as much as $5,000 of their property tax bill every year.
To qualify for the deferral program, seniors must have an annual household income of not more than $55,000, have equity in their homes that exceeds the sum of property taxes deferred, and have lived in their homes for at least 3 years. Properties which generate rental income are not eligible for the program. Properties held in a trust are also ineligible, although there are some exceptions to this rule. Applications must be submitted by March 1, 2022.
The tax deferral program is essentially a loan from the state that is charged a simple interest of 6% per year. To ensure payment, a lien is placed on the senior’s home that will prevent it from being sold until the loan is paid. Seniors interested in this relief should consider discussing the matter with legal advisers, financial advisers, or family members.
The Township Assessor advises that senior citizens ensure they are receiving all eligible exemptions on their property, including the Senior Freeze and the Senior Exemption. By applying for these other benefits, seniors will reduce their property tax liability.
More information is available on the Cook County Treasurer’s website: https://www.cookcountytreasurer.com/
Seniors with additional questions about the deferral program can call the Riverside Township Assessor’s Office at (708) 447-7700 or send an email to: [email protected].