Kathleen McQuilkin, CRS, GRI, SRES, CRP, CSP, ALHS

Last Updated: November 6, 2017 | View all posts by Kathleen McQuilkin, CRS, GRI, SRES, CRP, CSP, ALHS

As Realtors®, we understand how much Americans value homeownership. We work to advocate for homeowners at the local, state and national levels. It’s one of the reasons the Pennsylvania Association of Realtors® supports the state referendum on the ballot tomorrow and we’re urging Realtors® and homeowners to vote “yes.”

Day in and day out, we hear from homeowners throughout the state who are overburdened with property taxes. Some people can no longer afford to live in their homes because of increases in property taxes. And the overwhelmingly high property taxes are keeping others from being able to purchase a home. PAR believes that passing the referendum will pave the way for property tax reduction or elimination, which would ultimately be a good development for Pennsylvania’s homeowners.

The Homestead Exclusion Amendment would allow local taxing authorities to exclude up to 100 percent of the assessed value of a home from taxation. Currently, the law allows the exclusion up to one-half of the median assessed value of all homestead property.

If the referendum passes, the state legislature can enact legislation to enable local municipalities and/or school districts to eliminate property taxes by implementing other taxes in lieu of the property tax. If municipalities take advantage of the Homestead Exclusion Amendment, funding could be replaced through a personal income tax, an earned income tax or another undefined tax, which puts them in control of their local tax collections.

Passing the referendum is a clear message to our state legislature that Pennsylvania homeowners want action on property tax reform. The association believes the Homestead Exclusion Amendment is one step toward achieving some property tax reform and giving relief to many homeowners.

Please remember to vote “yes” on the referendum tomorrow.