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California expands property tax benefits for seniors, wildfire victims

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KION) State officials announced that seniors, severely disabled residents and victims of wildfires or other natural disasters have expanded property tax benefits.

The state said they can transfer the taxable value of their original home to a replacement as many as three times during their life anywhere in the state. The expansion is part of Proposition 19, also called the Home Protection for Seniors, Severely Disabled, Families and Victims of Wildfire or Natural Disasters Act, that was passed last November.

"Seniors, the severely disabled, and victims of wildfires or natural
disasters can now move to a replacement home anywhere in California and
avoid significant property tax increases if eligible," said California
State Board of Equalization (BOE) Chairman Antonio Vazquez. "Property tax
relief can be beneficial for those especially on limited incomes or who
have been affected by wildfires or natural disasters."

Residents aged 55 and older and the severely disabled will need to meet specific requirements to qualify for the benefits, and both the original and replacement homes must be eligible for the homeowners' or disabled veterans' exemption.

Those interested will need to file an application with the local County Assessor to transfer the taxable value, and the replacement needs to be bought or newly constructed within two years of the sale of the original home. If the market value of the new home is higher than the original, the difference in value will be added to the taxable value when it transfers.

Wildfire and natural disaster victims will need to meet the same conditions and requirements as seniors, but there will not be age restrictions. To qualify, the original home must be substantially damaged, and the damage must be from a wildfire or Governor-proclaimed disaster.

California News / Money / Money / Top Stories / Wildfires

Avery Johnson

Avery Johnson is the Digital Content Director at KION News Channel 5/46.

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