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Johnson hosting ‘Save Our Homes’ workshops in September

Philadelphia City Councilmember Kenyatta Johnson will conduct property tax relief workshops 

throughout his Second District to help residents navigate Philadelphia’s 2022 property tax assessments and find ways to save money on property taxes. 

Upcoming workshops are on Sept. 21, from 4-8 p.m. at the Francis Myers Recreation Center, 5801 Kingessessing Avenue in Southwest Philadelphia; Sept. 22, from 6-8 p.m. at St. Monica’s Parish, 2422 S 17th St.; and Sept. 24 from noon to 4 p.m. at the Church of the Lord Jesus Christ of the Apostolic Faith, 701 South 22nd Street. 

“The City’s Office of Property Assessment issued new residential property tax assessments for Tax Year 2023, and they are going up by an average of 31-percent citywide,” Johnson said. “Many homeowners are now starting to receive notice of their new assessments by mail. Many are seeing large increases in the assessed value of their homes – which could mean higher property taxes next year.”  

Johnson sponsored the “Save Our Homes” property relief program which gives qualifying residents ways of offsetting the increases to their tax bills. 

“I was the lead sponsor in City Council of the ‘Save Our Homes’ Property Tax Relief Plan,” Johnson said. “Council approved the seven-point plan in June, to help residential property owners lower their property taxes. I want to get as many Second District residents as possible to take advantage of all the city tax programs available to save money on their property taxes this year. I also want to make sure that they appeal their property assessments if they’re not accurate.” 

The City’s Office of Property Assessment announced on Sept. 15 that it will extend the deadline to submit First Level Review applications to Friday, October 14, 2022, giving property owners an additional two weeks to submit applications. OPA extended the deadline (which had been September 30) due to postal delays in Philadelphia.

Workshop attendees are asked to bring proof of age, address, and income with them to the event. It is also recommended that people bring their Notices of Valuation from OPA if they want to formally appeal their property tax assessment.      

Residents will be seen on a first come, first served basis. To RSVP in advance for a workshop, email Councilmember Johnson’s office through his website: https://phlcouncil.com/kenyattajohnson.

Property owners can view their 2023 assessments at https://property.phila.gov/ using their address.

The major portions of the Save Our Homes plan are:

  • Increase the city’s Homestead Exemption from $45,000 to $80,000. This will increase the value of the benefit from $629 per year to about $1,120 per year.
  • Allow retroactive enrollment in the Senior Tax Freeze, as far back as 2018. This will allow low-income seniors to freeze their property assessments at the time they became eligible, rather than the time when they enrolled.
  • Multiple changes to the Longtime Owner-Occupants Program that will significantly increase access for low- and mid-income homeowners. Newly eligible households would increase for thousands of homeowners. 
  • Allocating at least $15 million for the city’s rental assistance program in the proposed Fiscal Year 2023 budget.
  • Allocating at least $2.5 million in the Fiscal Year 2023 budget for an outreach campaign to inform Philadelphia residents about property tax relief programs available to them. 
  • Allocating $1 million in the Fiscal Year 2023 budget for free legal assistance for low-income renters facing displacement due to rising rents, in part because of assessment increases. 
  • According to officials, the Save Our Homes property tax relief plan has support from Community Legal Services, which assists clients when they face the threat of losing their homes, incomes, health care and even their families.

The Office of Property Assessment is mailing 2023 assessments now, including a First Level Review form to be filled out if assessments are believed to be too high. OPA decides FLRs. More information on FLRs is available at https://www.phila.gov/departments/office-of-property-assessment/property-assessments/. Residents can call the OPA Hotline at 215-686-9200.
Philadelphians can also formally appeal your assessment to the Board of Revision of Taxes (Details available here: https://www.phila.gov/media/20220815121914/2023-Market-Value-Appeal-form-rev.pdf). This step allows payment of 2023 property taxes at the 2022 amount until cases are decided. Call (215) 686-4343 for more information or email appealinquiry@phila.gov 

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