Increase in allowable income makes more seniors and disable citizens eligibility for property tax deductions
By Marsha Michaelis
As of August this year, there is an increase in the allowable income for seniors and people with disabilities to be eligible for property tax reductions in Stevens County. The threshold is now $45,000.
“There are a lot of seniors and disabled people in this county who may qualify for exemptions, but they do not know exemptions are available to them,” said County Assessor Rick Johnson. “This year I’ve had five meetings throughout the county sharing the exemption information and many of the attendees told me this was the first time they had heard of these exemptions.”
The following people may be eligible for property tax relief in Stevens County:
– People at least 61 years of age who have limited household income (less than $45,000). Household income includes your own income, your spouse or partner’s income, and the income of anyone who lives in and owns part of the house. Personal medical expenses may lower total household income.
– People with disabilities who have limited income or a disability that keeps them from working.
Veterans of the U.S. armed forces who have a total disability, or a service-connected disability rating of at least 80%.
Qualified people must occupy their home for more than six months in an assessment year, and may continue to qualify even if they’ve spent time in a hospital, nursing home, board home, adult family home, or the home of a relative.
Applicants who are approved will pay reduced property taxes. They may be exempt from excess levies (generally voter-approved), portions of the state school levy, and certain regular levies.
Eligible residents who did not know about the program may be able to get a refund on up to three years of previously paid property taxes.
“I’m hoping to facilitate more meetings next year to help educate the taxpayers,” said Assessor Johnson.
There is no need to wait if you think you qualify. To find out more or apply for an exemption, contact the Stevens County Assessor’s office at 509-684-6161. Staff there are happy to assist and answer any questions you may have. You can also find out more on the Assessor’s web page at the Stevens County website: www.stevenscountywa.gov. (Select the “Government” menu and choose “Assessor.”)