New Jersey homeowners, if you received a 2009 Homestead Benefit Application you most likely owned and occupied a home in New Jersey that was your principal residence on October 1, 2009, provided that the 2009 property taxes were paid and that you met certain income limits. The income limit is $150,000 or less for homeowners who were age 65 or older or blind or disabled on the last day of 2009 tax year; for homeowners under age 65 and not blind or disabled, the income limit is $75,000 or less. No New Jersey Homestead Benefit will be given for vacation homes, a second home or a property that you own and rent to someone else.
One, if not the most, significant change this year for New Jersey homeowners is that Homestead Benefit replaced the Homestead Rebate. In years past, New Jersey residents who qualified for the New Jersey Homestead Rebate would receive a check in the mail or via direct deposit. Under the New Jersey Homestead Benefit, New Jersey homeowners will no longer receive a check but will receive a credit on their property tax bill for the second quarter of 2011.
After April 1, 2011, eligible homeowners will receive a revised property tax bill or advice copy from their tax collector reflecting the amount of the Homestead Benefit. If your principal residence is in a co-op or continuing care retirement community and are eligible for the homestead benefit, you will receive a check or direct deposit on or after May 1, 2011.
New Jersey homeowners who have received your 2009 Homestead Benefit Application, make sure you file by the deadline of November 1, 2010. Once you complete the worksheet and for your convenience, you can file online or by phone (877) 658-2972.
You may be too late to qualify for the 2010 Homestead Benefit if the occupancy date remains as October 1st but it's never too late to become a New Jersey homeowner. If you are thinking about buying a home in New Jersey, please contact New Jersey Real Estate Agent, Gina Chirico.