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Homestead Exemption Frequently Asked Questions


In 1970, Ohio voters approved a constitutional amendment permitting a homestead exemption that reduced property tax for lower income senior citizens. In 2007 the General Assembly expanded the program to include all homeowners who were either 65 or older or permanently and totally disabled, regardless of their income. Beginning with the 2014 tax year, the state of Ohio returned to the originally approved system of applying means/income testing to determine eligibility for the homestead exemption; and added an additional classification of recipient, disabled veteran, which allows for an increased reduction of $50,000.

To qualify for the senior and disabled persons homestead exemption of $25,000, a homeowner must:
  • Own and occupy the home as their primary place of residence as of January 1, of the year for which they apply
  • Be 65 years of age, or turn 65, by December 31 of the year for which they apply; or Be totally and permanently disabled as of January 1, of the year for which they apply, as certified by a licensed physician / psychologist or a letter from an authorized agent; or
  • Be the surviving spouse of a person who was receiving the homestead exemption at the time of death and where the surviving spouse was at least 59 years old on the date of death.
  • Have a total income (for both the applicant and the applicant's spouse) that does not exceed the amount set by the law, which is adjusted annually for inflation. "Total income" is defined as the adjusted gross income for Ohio income tax purposes. The current maximum allowed is $31,800 for the 2017 application period.

Note: Homeowners who received a homestead exemption credit in 2013 tax year will not be subject to the income requirement if they move to another Ohio residence.

To qualify for the disabled veterans enhanced homestead exemption of $50,000, a homeowner must:

  • Own and occupy the home as their primary place of residence as of January 1, of the year for which they apply
  • Be a veteran of the Armed Forces of the United States (including the reserve components or the National Guard) who has been discharged or released from active duty in the Armed Forces under honorable conditions, and who has received a 100% disability rating or a 100% disability rating for compensation based on individual un-employability for a service-connected disability or combination of service-connected disabilities.

Beginning in 2016, veterans qualify if they were discharged from active duty under honorable conditions and if their compensation is based on individual un-employability, often referred to as "IU." Veterans eligible under this provision will have received a letter from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs stating that their application for the status of individual un-employability has been granted. The veteran should provide a copy of this document along with a copy of the DD-214 to establish eligibility under this expanded law.

The exact amount of savings from the exemption will vary from community to community based on local tax rates.

Taxpayers may only have one home approved for Homestead, if they own multiple homes the principal place of residence is the home where the person is registered to vote and the person’s place of residence for income tax purposes.

Homestead Exemptions remain with the home for the current tax year if the owner sells the house. If the Homestead recipient purchases a new house they do not take the Homestead Exemption with them, they must refile the next year. Remember, to be eligible, you must own and occupy the property you are seeking a Homestead Exemption for on January 1 of that tax year.

The Application timeline is from the first Monday in January through December 31 for that tax year. Applications that do not arrive at the Cuyahoga County Fiscal Office prior to December 31 will not be approved for that tax year. Currently the Manufactured homes deadline is the first Monday in June for the following tax year.

If you were eligible for Homestead in the prior year but did not apply you can file a late application for that prior year. Please contact the office for details.

If you are interested in filing a homestead exemption application, call our office at (216) 443- 7050. You can also download the Application or the Veterans Application and mail it to our office at:

Please mail Homestead applications to:
Cuyahoga County Fiscal Department
Real Estate Services - Homestead
2079 East Ninth Street
Room 2-219
Cleveland, OH 44115

Please mail Manufactured Homes applications to:
Cuyahoga County Fiscal Department
Real Property - Manufactured Homes
2079 East Ninth Street
Room 2-219
Cleveland, OH 44115
(216)443-3689

Those homeowners who already receive the homestead exemption do not need to reapply every year. However, if your circumstances change you must notify our office. A continuing homestead exemption application is sent each year to those homeowners who received the reduction for the preceding tax year. Please return this form only if there have been changes in eligibility status, e.g. you no longer own the home, no longer occupy it as your primary place of residence, or if your disability status has changed.

Homestead Exemption Forms