ASK MARK: My Granddaughter Lives With Me, Does Her Income Count Against a Senior Homestead Exemption?

ASK MARK

  • Mark D. Armstrong, CIAO, Kane County’s supervisor of assessments since 2006, has nearly 30 years’ experience in property valuation. Click here for more about Mark. To Ask Mark a question, email it to KaneSOA@co.kane.il.us or mail it to: Mark at 719 South Batavia Avenue, Geneva, IL 60134.

 

Q: I just turned 65 and want to apply for the Senior Citizen Assessment Freeze Homestead Exemption. I see that it is limited to those with a “household income” of $55,000 or less. My granddaughter has lived with me for the past two years. She has a part-time job, but does not pay me any rent. Must I include her income on the application?

A: Yes, you must include her income in your application.

This is not a Kane County Rule, but a requirement of the State; I have no authority to alter it in any way.The General Assembly has determined that “household income” is the basis for eligibility for the exemption. While the amounts have increased over the years (the current amount is $55,000), the definition has stayed the same.

The General Assembly has determined that “household income” is the basis for eligibility for the exemption. While the amounts have increased over the years (the current amount is $55,000), the definition has stayed the same.

In determining “household income”, the property tax code provides these definitions:

  • “Household” means the applicant, the spouse of the applicant, and all persons using the residence of the applicant as their principal place of residence.
  • “Household income” means the combined income of the members of a household for the calendar year preceding the taxable year.
  • “Residence” means the principal dwelling place and appurtenant structures used for residential purposes in this State occupied on January 1 of the taxable year by a household and so much of the surrounding land, constituting the parcel upon which the dwelling place is situated, as is used for residential purposes.[28]

Again, these definitions are state law; they are not developed by anyone in Kane County Government, and they are not discretionary. Finally, remember that you must apply for the exemption with the County Assessment Office. You can get an application by calling (630) 208-3818 or at www.KaneCountyAsssessments.org. After the initial application is approved, you will be mailed a renewal form each subsequent year.

 

 

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