Do I get the Homestead Rebate if I sell?

Ask NJMoneyHelp

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Q. If you sell your house do you still get the Homestead rebate from prior years?
— Homeowner

A. The Homestead Rebate provides property tax relief to eligible New Jersey homeowners.

In the past, there has been a lag in when the rebates were received, so your question is a good one.

The lag is because the money appropriated for this rebate is contingent upon the state budget and the current fiscal standing of the state.

There was a time when homeowners who sold their homes would lose the benefit.

Back in 2012, the new buyers would inherit the property tax rebate, and the sellers would get nothing. After the Bamboozled column wrote about the issue, the state made changes to the form to apply for the benefit.

So to your question: the answer is yes, you should be able to collect.

“If you sell your home before filling out your Homestead application, you should answer `no’ to the question about whether you still own the property,” said Jody D’Agostini, a certified financial planner with AXA Advisors/The Falcon Financial Group in Morristown. “Then, the state of New Jersey will issue a check or direct deposit.”

If you sell your home and move after you have filed the application, the only way to get the benefit is for you to take a credit at the home closing for that amount, she said.

So make sure you remember this when you sell your home, and be sure to include the rebate you should get as part of the home sale paperwork.

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