One big problem with the homestead exemption approach to tax relief is that people have to apply to get it. A successful program needs to get people the money automatically. The Nutter administration’s estimate that 96% of eligible property owners get the homestead exemption looks like it’s probably going to be way off.
MORE THAN 100,000 homeowners, including huge clusters in some of the city’s poorest areas, haven’t gotten the message about the homestead exemption, a relief measure that could save them hundreds of dollars a year under the city’s new property-tax system the city said.
Setting the language barrier aside, application rates have been low in most of the city’s low-income areas, including North Philly, Bridesburg, Kensington, Port Richmond, Point Breeze, parts of West Philly and Tacony, according to data compiled by AxisPhilly.