Are people getting the new ANCHOR benefit already?


Q. Hello. I have heard some people talk about getting some funds from the ANCHOR program this year already. Can you tell me if that might be the case? We already received ANCHOR from 2019 and 2020.
— Homeowner

A. The people you heard were wrong.

It’s confusing, but the ANCHOR property tax benefit, like the Homestead Rebate before it, runs behind the actual calendar year.

The next year’s benefit would be for the 2021 tax year.

If it follows how the 2020 year benefit went, come August, the Division of Taxation will probably send letters to many residents saying their applications will be filed automatically, while others will have to proactively apply.

But none of that can happen until the benefit is funded in the next fiscal year budget, which is due by June 30.

Lawmakers are negotiating exactly what will be in the budget now, but Gov. Phil Murphy called for funding for the 2021 ANCHOR benefit. Now it’s up to lawmakers to make it official, but no one thinks the benefit will go away, at least not yet.

Some believe ANCHOR will be swallowed up by the Stay NJ benefit, which was already passed into law but won’t kick in until the start of 2026 — if no changes are made to the law.

The Stay NJ benefit is supposed to cut property taxes for seniors who earn less than $500,000 by up to 50%, but changes are expected, including a decision on how the ANCHOR benefit will be affected.

We’re watching this one closely, so stay tuned!

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This story was originally published in March 2024. presents certain general financial planning principles and advice, but should never be viewed as a substitute for obtaining advice from a personal professional advisor who understands your unique individual circumstances.