State Makes Important Changes to Senior Property Tax Exemptions

The new year brought new changes to property tax exemptions for senior citizens in Illinois. No longer do senior homeowners have to file renewal forms for the Senior Exemption. Instead, those who received the exemption last year automatically receive it this year.

The Senior Exemption is available to all homeowners aged 65 or older. With the implementation of automatic renewal for the Senior Exemption, only those who have not received the exemption in the past, especially those who just became eligible for the exemption, will need to apply.

“If you were born in 1954 and you own a home, you should apply for this exemption,” said Assessor Emilio “Emo” Cundari. “This is a great way to lower your property tax obligations without having to worry about reapplying year after year.”

The assessor’s office serves to help residents apply for both the Senior Exemption and the Senior Freeze. The freeze allows for low- to moderate-income seniors to receive additional tax savings on their property taxes, provided the household income is less than $65,000.

“Our office is here to aid anyone who needs help in applying for property tax exemptions and freezes. We can help prepare everything a resident would need to work through the application process,” Cundari said.

Any senior who received the Senior Freeze last year should receive a renewal application in the mail. It must be completed and returned by February 13. If a senior homeowner has not received the renewal application, they can visit the Cook County Assessor’s website.

Residents applying for the Senior Freeze will need to provide proof of income for 2018, which includes income taxes, a social security statement, and a current form of identification. The savings from these exemptions will appear on second installment tax bills that will likely be mailed in the summer of 2020.

Cundari encouraged individuals applying for either exemption for the first time to call the office at 708-656-3600, Exts. 225, 226 or 228, for help and information.