Kay County Assessor

 

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Susan Keen
201 S Main - Newkirk, OK 74647 Phone: (580) 362-2565 Fax: (580) 362-3668 E-mail: kayassessor@courthouse.kay.ok.us

What is homestead exemption?

Homestead exemption is the reduction in the taxable value of the homestead as authorized by law. One thousand (1,000) is the maximum that can be deducted for the assessed value of a residential property. Homestead exemption is granted to the homeowner who resides in the property on a permanent basis as of January 1. The deed or other evidence of ownership must be executed on or before January 1 and filed in the County Clerk's office on or before February 1.

How do I apply for homestead exemption?

Applications for homestead exemption are made with the Assessor's office. The Assessor's office is also available in each town in Kay County at least one day in the month of February to receive homestead exemptions. While homestead exemption can be taken any time throughout the year, only those received before March 15 (and meeting the specified requirements) will be applied to the current year's taxes.

Must I reapply for homestead exemption every year?

No. As stated in the requirements above, there is no reason to reapply for homestead exemption unless the deed is changed for some reason such as sale, divorce, death, etc. You do, however, need to reapply for homestead exemption if you purchase a new home for use as the primary homestead. Your homestead exemption does not transfer!

Can active duty military personnel receive a homestead?

Yes. Military personnel who are full-time active personnel and who own property in Oklahoma may apply for and receive homestead exemption. Military personnel should be aware that obtaining homestead exemption makes them legal residents of Oklahoma and subject to Oklahoma income tax and motor vehicle tag.

Can mobile homeowners receive a homestead exemption?

A mobile homeowner who meet all other homestead requirements and who owns land on which the mobile home is located, may receive homestead exemption. Owners of mobile homes who live in mobile home parks or who rent or lease space are not eligible for homestead exemptions, unless they are over 62 and their income does not exceed $10,000.

What are the benefits of homestead exemption?

As noted, the homestead exemption of 1,000 off the assessed valuation reduces the real property tax by the amount of the millage levy effective in your area.

What if I already have homestead exemption and my deed changes?

If you change your deed for any reason i.e. divorce, sale, change of owner, court action or death of spouse - you must renew your homestead exemption. Contact our office if you have any questions.

Are there any property tax relief programs for person with low income?

Yes. There are two property tax relief programs: the additional homestead exemption and the state property tax credit or refund program.

How do I qualify and file for the additional homestead exemption?

Any person who is the head of household* with a homestead exemption may receive an additional &1,000 assessment exemption if the gross household income** from all sources did not exceed $20,000 for the past calendar year.

Application for the additional homestead exemption is made with the Assessor's office between January 1 and March 15. Verification of income is prepared as part of the application and a copy of all income verifications from the previous year must accompany the application. This includes: pensions, annuities, federal Social Security, unemployment payments, veteran's disability compensation, public assistance payments, alimony support money, worker's compensation, loss-of-time insurance payments, capital gains and any other type of income received for the previous year, and excluding gifts.

Please Note: Under new law, any person who is 65 or older as of March 15 and who has previously qualified for additional homestead shall not be required to renew applications annually. However, any person whose total household income exceeds $20,000 shall notify the County Assessor, and the additional homestead exemption shall not be allowed for the year.

*The term "head of household" means a person who, as owner or joint owner, maintains a home and furnishes support for the home, furnishings, and other material necessities.

**The term "gross household income" means the gross amount of income of every type, regardless of the source, received by all persons occupying the same household, whether such income was taxable or nontaxable for federal or state income tax purposes.

What to bring to the Assessor's office in order to apply:

Bring in copes of all income verifications from the previous year that are usually received in January. This includes copies of all verifications for pensions, annuities, federal Social Security, unemployment payments, veteran's disability compensation, public assistance payments, alimony support money, worker's compensation, loss-of-time insurance pavements, capital gains and any other type of income received, and excluding gifts. The date of birth for those applying. Both spouses are not required to sign the applications but both dates of birth are required. Ownership information can be located in the courthouse.

How do I qualify/apply for the state property tax credit or refund program?

Any person 65 years of age or older or any totally disabled person, who is head of household, who was a resident of this state during the entire preceding calendar year and whose gross household income does not exceed $10,000 is qualified for the program and may apply.

This requires that a form 538H be completed and mailed to the Oklahoma Tax Commission, 2501 N. Lincoln Blvd., Oklahoma City, OK 73194-0009. We have this form in our office or call (405) 521-3108, Oklahoma Tax Commission Income Tax Forms Section or www.tax.ok.gov.

What is the senior valuation freeze?

State Question 677 directs that homestead property value shall be frozen by the County Assessor if the following conditions exist:

*The head of household for the homestead property is age 65 or older as of January 1. * The gross household income from all sources, except gifts, does not exceed the median income determined by HUD annually (Please call our office for the current year's amount). *Property must be a valid homestead property with proper evidence of a homestead application. (As with any homestead, the general statutes for homestead qualification apply to the freeze). *The statutes specify that only one homestead and, by extension, only one freeze is permitted. *The freeze applies only to the homestead property used as a domicile and may not be applied to non homestead property.

How do I apply for the freeze?

The property owner must apply for the freeze at the County Assessor's office by completing the Application for Property Valuation Freeze and Additional Homestead Exemption (OTC Form 994). The form must be completed in its entirety regarding:

Income- Gross household income for the previous year from all sources, except gifts, for all persons residing in the home. This includes: pensions, annuities, federal Social Security, unemployment payments, veteran's disability compensations, public assistance payments, alimony support payments, worker's compensation, loss-of-time insurance payments, capital gains and any other type of income received, and excluding gifts.

Age - The year after the property owner turns 65 is the first year of eligibility.

Ownership - Proof of ownership shall be required.

Other Information - As may be required by the Assessor to document claim for the freeze.

The freeze will take effect for the taxable year in which the application is made and approved and the application must be made between January 1 and March 15. If the application is denied, the property owner has the right to appeal to the County Board of Equalization.

What to bring to the Assessor's office in order to apply:

Bring in copies of all income verifications for the previous year that are usually received in January. This includes copies of all verifications for pensions, annuities, federal Social Security, unemployment payments, veteran's disability compensations, public assistance payments, alimony support money, worker's compensation, loss-of-time insurance payments, capital gains and any other type of income received, excluding gifts. The date of birth for those applying. Both spouses are not required to sign the applications but both dates of birth are required. Ownership information can be located in the courthouse.

Please Note: The senior freeze locks in the valuation, but DOES NOT FREEZE ALL TAXES. The tax amount could increase under these three specific situations:

Additional millage of levy is added.

Judgments against the county.

Voters modify assessment percentages under authority of State Question 675.

The senior valuation freeze may be obtained in addition to participation in the property tax refund and the additional homestead exemption programs. If previously qualified for the limitation on the fair cash value of homestead property, no annual application is required. However, if the income exceeds the median income determined by HUD annually in any year, the person shall notify the County Assessor and the limitation shall not be allowed for the applicable year.

Circumstances for the removal of freeze:

The freeze is valid on the property as long as the property is not changed, transferred, or otherwise modified.

If title is transferred, changed or conveyed to another person, the senior valuation freeze shall expire. The Assessor is then required to assess the property at its fair market value.

Improvements to the property, such as a room addition, will lift the valuation freeze. The additional value will be added to the value of the property which had been frozen. The new total value is frozen again as long as freeze requirements are met.

Physical additions or changes considered to be maintenance such as normal repairs or minor remodeling, minor efficiency improvements, or retrofit improvements such as wheelchair ramps are not considered physical improvements affecting the senior valuation freeze.

If gross household income from all sources, except gifts, exceeds the median income determined by HUD annually in any year, the freeze shall expire. The value of the property is then subject to the 5% cap increase for that year.

What is the Veteran's exemption?

Beginning January 1, 2006, each head of household who has been honorably discharged from active service in any branch of the Armed Forces of the United States or Oklahoma National Guard and who has been certified by the United States of Veteran's Affairs or its successor to have a 100% permanent disability sustained through military action or accident or resulting from disease are entitled to claim an exemption for the full amount of the fair cash value of the homestead. In order to be eligible for the exemption authorized by this section, the individual shall be required to prove residency by laws or be eligible for the homestead exemption pursuant to law.

How do I apply for the Veteran's exemption?

If all the requirements for the veteran's exemption are met, a form 998 must be completed. The applicant must provide the County Assessor with a current U.S.D.V.A benefits award letter or such document that the U.S.D.V.A. issues for qualifications specific to this exemption that the 100% service related disability, or the applicant is in receipt of compensation at the 100% rate. The County Assessor is authorized to request and verify any information from the applicant or the U.S.D.V.A. they may feel is relevant.

 

Exemptions and Valuation Freeze