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STAR Real Property Tax Exemptions

January 17, 2015

People often have questions regarding the STAR real property tax exemption.  The STAR exemption entitles anyone who owns a primary residence to a reduction in the amount they pay for School Tax (STAR = School Tax Relief).

There are two types of exemptions.  The Basic STAR exemption is available to anyone owning a primary residence, as long the annual combined income of all owners is less than $500,000 per year.  If you are a first-time homeowner, you can register using an RP-425 form, which you can get from your local (village, town, city) property tax assessor or the application may be downloaded online from the following address:

The Enhanced STAR exemption is available to senior citizens.  The exemption is available to any homeowner 65 years of age or older, so long as the home is his/ her primary residence, and if the total annual income for all the owners is below $83,300.  Income means federal “adjusted gross income” minus the “taxable amount” of total distributions from Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs).

In years past, the homeowner only had to register once and the exemption was automatically renewed.  In 2014 and for years after, the New York State legislation requires anyone who was previously registered to re-register for the STAR exemption.  The State found that many taxpayers, either purposely or by mistake, were taking exemptions on more than one property.  Again, everyone meeting the income requirement is entitled to one STAR exemption, but it must be for their primary residence.  Rental properties, summer homes, are not eligible for the STAR exemption.

To confirm your registration, you may contact the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance online or by phone 518-457-2036.