Question 10: As a Santa Barbara County property owner, am I eligible for special tax exemptions?
There are several exemptions for property owners with special circumstances that must be filed with the County Assessor's Office.
There is an exclusion from the supplemental assessment for a new construction. The property must be held for sale, and the builder must file the necessary claim form with the Assessor prior to or within 30 days from, the start of construction. If the form isn't filed, a supplemental assessment is made to the builder upon completion of the construction. If the form is filed, a supplemental assessment is not made until the property is sold to the new owner.
If you own a home and occupy it as your principal place of residence as of January 1, you may apply for an exemption of $7,000 of your assessed value. New property owners should automatically receive an exemption application in the mail. A Homeowners' Exemption also may apply to a supplemental assessment if the property was not previously receiving a Homeowners' Exemption on the regular Assessment Roll.
To be eligible for a Veterans' Exemption, a veteran must have been a resident of California as of January 1. Also, a single veteran or a non-remarried surviving spouse of a veteran must not have assets valued at more than $5,000. A married veteran must not have assets valued at more than $10,000.
Disabled Veterans' Exemption
If you are a California veteran who is rated 100% disabled, blind or a paraplegic due to service-connected disability while in the armed forces (or if you are the non-remarried surviving spouse of such a veteran or one who died of service-connected causes while on active duty) you may be eligible for an exemption off the assessed value of your home.
Property used exclusively for a church, college, cemetery, museum, school or library may qualify for an exemption. Properties owned and used exclusively by a non-profit religious, charitable, scientific or hospital corporation are also eligible. A claim must be filed with the Assessor.
State Sponsored Programs
Property Tax Assistance for Senior Citizens, Blind, or Disabled Persons
The state budget did not include funding for the Gonzalves-Deukmejian-Petris Senior Citizens Property Tax Assistance law, which provides direct cash assistance. The Franchise Tax Board (FTB) will not issue Homeowner and Renter Assistance (HRA) Program instruction booklets and will not accept HRA claims. For the most current information on the HRA program, go to http://ftb.ca.gov and search for hra.
If you have any questions, call 916.845.2119 or fax 916.845.4022
Property Tax Postponement for Senior Citizens, Blind, or Disabled Persons
In September 2014, Assembly Bill AB 2231 Chapter 703, Statutes of 2014, reinstated a revised Property Tax Postponement (PTP) program. The State Controller’s Office (SCO) will begin accepting new PTP applications beginning September 1, 2016.
Please see website at http://www.sco.ca.gov/ardtax_prop_tax_postponement.html for more information.