Homestead exemptions provide a significant reduction in annual property taxes and are available to individuals who own and reside in a home in DeKalb County. The property must be the legal residence for all purposes (including filing of Federal and State income taxes, registering any owned or lease vehicles, registering to vote, etc.) on January 1 of each year to qualify for or retain an exemption. Only private residences are eligible for an exemption – at their primary residence. Once an exemption has been granted, it remains in place as long as the applicant continues to reside on the property, or until a different exemption is applied for and received.
You may check your exemption status by reviewing your property information.
Homestead exemptions are not transferable, and must be reapplied for at the new home. Basic homestead applications may be processed by mail, in person, or online at www.dekalbcountyga.gov/taxcommissioner . Applicant(s) for senior or disability exemptions must apply in person and present copies of the previous year’s Federal and State income tax returns, any Social Security Form 1099s, proof of age, and/or proof of 100% total and permanent disability. Once an exemption has been granted, it remains in place as long as the applicant continues to reside on the property. A Property Assessment Freeze is applied to all properties granted homestead exemption for County assessments.
Basic Homestead is an exemption you may claim against the taxable value of your home as long as you own and occupy that home as your primary residence on January 1 of the year in which the exemption is being claimed. There are no age or income requirements for this exemption.
All homeowners seeking a homestead exemption are required to file an application. Application is not automatic. Neither your mortgage company nor closing attorney may file the application when a home is purchased. A homestead application can be obtained from the Tax Commissioner’s Office. It may be returned by mail as long as it is postmarked no later than April 1 st. A copy of the application can be found the Tax Commissioner’s Forms page, or you may also apply on-line by clicking here
Property Assessment Freeze
Residents in DeKalb County that receive the benefit of homestead exemption may also apply for a property assessment freeze to help offset future increases in property value. This freeze does not affect school, city or state taxes. Residents who currently have homestead exemption must apply for this freeze, however new applicants applying for exemption will receive the benefit of the freeze with their exemption. Once the Freeze Level is set, it cannot be “re-frozen” at a lower level regardless of changes in assessment. Residents must qualify for this freeze by April 1.
Disabled Veteran or Widow(er)
If you are a disabled veteran, un-remarried spouse of a disabled veteran or un-remarried spouse of a veteran killed in action, you may qualify for a Disabled Veteran/Spousal exemption which will provide additional savings on your property tax bill. These exemptions must be applied for in person. Please be prepared to provide a letter of adjudication or other documentation regarding disability or widow(er) status. If disabled, disability must be 100% permanent and total. If 65 or older, please provide income information, as additional savings may be available.
Exemption for Un-Remarried Spouse of Peace Officers and Firefighters Killed in the Line of Duty
Provides an exemption for the un-remarried surviving spouse of a peace officer or Firefighter who was killed in the line of duty for all ad valorem property taxes. This will not affect any special assessments assigned to the property (sanitation, stormwater, or streetlights, etc.). This exemption must be applied for in person.
If you are 100% totally and permanently disabled and meet certain income requirements you may qualify for the Disabled Exemption, which will provide additional reductions in your property tax bill.
If you are 70 years of age
H9 – This has a household income limit of $84,115 Federal Adjusted Gross PLUS Municipal Bonds. It exempts the applicant(s) from school taxes and maintains the exemption of $10,000 for County levies (except bonds).
If you are 65 years of age or 100% Permanently Disabled, you may be eligible for either
H4 – This has a household income limit of $10,000 Georgia Net Income *. This exempts the recipient(s) from all school taxes, and increases the exemption to $14,000 for all County levies.
H6 – This has a household income limit of $15,000 Georgia Net Income*. It increases the exemption to $16,500 for school taxes and $14,000 for County levies.
H8 – This has a household income limit of $16,000 Gross Income. It increases the exemption to $22,500 for school taxes and $14,000 for all County levies.
If you are 62 years of age or 100% Permanently Disabled, you may be eligible for either
H3 – This has a household income limit of $10,000 Georgia Net Income*. Exempts the recipient(s) from all school taxes, and maintains the exemption of $10,000 for County levies (except bonds).
H7 – This exemption has a household income limit of $16,000 gross income. It reduces taxable value of property by $22,500 for school taxes, and by $10,000 for County levies (except bonds).
* The Georgia Net Income requirement used for determination of eligibility is not a number found on income tax forms, but a formula provided by the Georgia Department of Revenue. For 2015, up to $31,956 for an individual or $63,912 for joint applicants in Social Security and retirement benefits may be excluded when calculating Georgia Net Income.
Other Local Exemptions
City of Atlanta – exemptions are granted along with County exemption
City of Avondale – local exemptions are not awarded
City of Brookhaven – Exemptions are granted along with the County exemptions
- Basic homestead exemption of $20,000 plus city assessment freeze (if applicable)
- Senior Exemption (age 65 and meeting County requirements) receive $34,000 plus city assessment freeze (if applicable)
City of Chamblee – The basic homestead exemption is granted along with County exemption. Elderly exemptions are applied for with the City of Chamblee.
- Basic homestead exemption of $30,000 off assessed value
- Elderly residents 65 and older and disabled residents that are 100% disabled can receive a 100% exemption from ad valorem taxes
City of Clarkston – seniors age 65 may apply for additional $20,000 exemption from the assessed value of their property when they qualify for homestead exemption.
City of Decatur – exemptions are applied for with the City of Decatur
City of Doraville – exemptions are awarded along with the county exemptions
- Basic homestead exemption of $25,000
- Elderly residents age 70 and older can receive 100% city tax exemption
- Basic exemption – $10,000 off assessed value plus a 1 mill reduction off assessed value
- Senior exemption – age 65 with $15,000 or less GA NET income – $14,000 plus a 1 mill reduction off assessed value
City of Lithonia– city exemptions are awarded with the county exemptions
- Basic homestead exemption of $2,000 off assessed value
- Elderly residents 65 and older and 100% disabled residents with net income less than $4,000 can receive an additional exemption of $2,000 off assessed value
City of Pine Lake– exemption is granted along with County exemption
- Basic homestead exemption of $4,000 off assessed value
City of Stone Mountain – local exemptions are applied for with the City of Stone Mountain
- Elderly residents age 62 or older with an income of less than $10,000 can receive an exemption of $20,000 off assessed value for city operations
Segue to an off topic: WSB TV is reporting that the “system” is considering a consulting package for Thurmond. We don’t need two ex supers on the payroll. If this comes to a vote, please vote no.