State lawmakers considering policy that would provide property tax relief for seniors

Boston Statehouse

Governor Charlie Baker is pushing for a statewide policy that would require all cities and town to provide property tax relief for seniors. 

Under this policy, residents 65 and older would be allowed to delay paying property taxes, until they sell their home or pass away.

“I’d like to see the tax relief, said Norm Cortis of West Springfield. “Its good for the elderly and the senior citizens. They need it.”

The Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation said property taxes have gone up by at least 4 percent in each of the last four years in Massachusetts, which reflects the state’s strong real estate market.

“The real estate market is really strong, said Maher Khatib of MBC Realtors. “The prices are going up so if taxes are not up they will go up. The real estate taxes affect directly the retirees.”

There are some ways you can ease the burden of property taxes. One of those ways is through the state’s tax credit program, which allows residents 65 and older to claim more than $1,000 as a credit. on state taxes. Seniors in about 90 percent of Massachusetts communities also can sign up for a local property tax deferral programs. 

A state report showed 28 percent of homeowners over the age of 65 have an income below $20,000 a year.

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