Law Offices of Robert M. Kaplan, P.C.
Schaumburg Family Law Attorney

Property Tax Exemptions

May 21, 2014
Posted By: Robert Kaplan
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Cook County Homeowners- There are currently four exemptions that must be applied for or renewed annually: The Homeowner Exemption, Senior Citizen Homestead Exemption, Senior Citizen Assessment Freeze Exemption, and the Home Improvement Exemption.

Home Owner Exemptions in Cook County

1. Homeowner Exemption - Taxpayers whose single-family home, townhouse, condominium, co-op, or apartment building (up to 6 units) is their primary residence can save $250.00 to $2,000.00 per year, depending on local tax rates and assessment increases. First-time applicants must have been the occupants of the property as of January 1 of the tax year in question. The Cook County Assessor's Office now automatically renews Homeowners Exemptions for properties that were not sold to new owners in the last year.

You may find applications and additional information at:

2.  Senior Citizen Exemption - Seniors can save up to $250.00 per year in property taxes, and up to $750.00 when combined with the Homeowner Exemption. For the 2013 tax year (payable in 2014), the applicant must have owned and occupied the property as of January 1, 2013, and must have been 65 years of age or older during the year for which you are applying.

3.  Senior Citizen Assessment Freeze Exemption - Qualified senior citizens can apply for a freeze of the assessed value of their property. Over time, in many areas, this program results in taxes changing minimally and often decreasing as surrounding properties continue to rise in assessed value. This is the most valuable homeowner exemption program. The value increases over the years as it eliminates the impact of regular assessment increases that may occur every three years. For the 2013 tax year (payable in 2014), the applicant must have owned and occupied the property on January 1, 2012 and January 1, 2013 and have been responsible for the 2013.

4.  Home Improvement Exemption - Homeowners can make up to $65,000.00 worth of property improvements without an increase in property taxes for at least 4 years. The value varies depending on the reduction of the assessed value and the tax rates where the property is located.

There are also several state and city programs available: 

5.  Senior Citizen Tax Deferral - The household income limit to participate has increased to $55,000.00. This program works like a loan from the State of Illinois to qualified senior citizens, with an annual interest rate of 6%. Any portion or all (up to $5,000.00 per year) of the tax may be deferred until the house is sold or until the death of the taxpayer. To apply, contact the Cook County Treasurer's Office at 312-443-5100.

6.  Disabled Veteran Homestead Exemption - Administered through the Illinois Department of Veteran's Affairs. Call 312-814-2460.

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