Longtime Homeowner Exemption
Only approximately 11,000 properties in Cook County qualify for this exemption. The Cook County Assessor's Office automatically detects which properties qualify based on assessment increases. These properties will receive application forms in the mail in early March, 2020.
What is the Longtime Occupant Homeowner Exemption?
The Longtime Occupant Homeowner Exemption enables you to receive an expanded Homeowner Exemption with no maximum exemption amount.
Who qualifies for a Longtime Occupant Homeowner Exemption?
Requirements for the Longtime Occupant Homeowner Exemption for Tax Year 2019 state that you must have
- Owned and occupied your residence from January 1, 2009 to January 1, 2019
- A total household income of $100,000 or less for income tax year 2018 and
- An assessment increase for your property that was significant enough to exceed the maximum amounts set by the state legislature.
When do I apply for the Longtime Occupant Homeowner Exemption?
The Cook County Assessor's Office will mail applications directly to the 11,000 properties that qualify for this exemption based on assessment increases. Qualified residences will receive this mailing in early March, 2020.
Who qualifies? Of the over 1.5 million residential properties in Cook County, fewer than two percent (2%) qualified for the Longtime Occupant Homeowner Exemption last year. This is due to the way the state legislature wrote the provision and the requirements they put in place in order to qualify.
Simply put, would-be savings from the Longtime Occupant Homeowner Exemption would have to exceed the savings from the Standard Homeowner Exemption. This does not happen for more than 98% of residences in Cook County.
The Cook County Assessor's Office wants all homeowner/occupants to receive the maximum exemption savings to which they are entitled. If we calculate that the Longtime Occupant Homeowner Exemption would provide the most savings for a home, we automatically mail an application.
If you wonder if an application should have been mailed to you, please call the Cook County Assessor's Office at 312-443-7550 and we will double-check your qualifications and apply the exemption(s) that will produce the largest property tax savings for you.
Please note: Properties not eligible to receive this exemption may be eligible to receive the full benefits of the standard Homeowner Exemption.
Please note: only approximately 11,000 properties in Cook County qualify for this exemption. The Cook County Assessor's Office automatically detects which properties qualify based on assessment increases. These properties will receive application forms in the mail in early March, 2020.
If you received an application form from our office, please mail the application form to our office as soon as possible (but must be received before April 10) so that our staff have time to process it and, if eligible, to apply to the second-installment property tax bills that will be sent this summer. Note that, per Illinois state law, a taxpayer's signing a fraudulent application for this exemption is perjury, and that any taxpayer who receives the exemption is subject to audit.
Is it too late to apply for exemptions?
If your home was eligible for a homestead exemption in a prior tax year (2016, 2017, or 2018) and you already paid the full tax amount billed for that year, the Assessor’s Office can help you obtain a refund through the Certificate of Error process.
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