Property Taxes – Get What’s Coming To You

A client of mine (he just sold his house last month) was wondering how long it would take for the Prince George’s County government to refund his property taxes. Well, of course, the short answer is “Don’t hold your breath!)

However, I went to the county website and there a new tab there for checking on and even paying your taxes. First of all, that’s incredibly helpful. You can see when your taxes were paid (to check up on your mortgage company!) and see what the balance is.

So, when I looked up his taxes, I found that his property was not listed as his principal residence — which has cost him a lot of money over the past seven years. He is eligible for the homestead tax credit, which I discussed here and here, but since it was listed as “not a principal residence”, he did not receive the credit.

There’s no happy ending to this story. My client cannot get a refund of the homestead tax credit that he should have received over the past seven years. That money is gone.

So, moral to the story … check your tax records carefully and make sure that your principal residence is correctly identified as your principal residence. It can save you a great deal of money in just one year and a great deal more when it accumulates over many years.  Go to the Prince George’s County Property Tax Records, type in your address and check.

© 2006 Susan Pruden.

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