Several state-level real estate initiatives and urban development policies were voted on in the Nov. 3 general election, including issues involving tax credits for veterans, widows and long-time homeowners.
California: Proposition 19 passes
The passing of Proposition 19 in California overhauls Proposition 13, which slashed property taxes by almost 60% in 1978. Now, eligible homeowners may transfer their tax assessments anywhere within the state – including the ability to transfer tax assessments to a more expensive home with an upward adjustment. People 55 years or older with disabilities can also transfer their tax assessments.
The “yes” vote also means that inherited homes not used as principal residences may be reassessed at market value when transferred.
Colorado: Amendment B passes
The passing of Amendment B repealed the Gallagher Amendment of 1982, which set residential and non-residential property tax assessment rates in the Colorado state constitution. This means the state legislature can freeze property tax assessment rates at its current rates – 7.15% for residential property, and 29% for non-residential property. In comparison, homeowners paid 21% in taxes in the ‘80’s.
In the future, the state can also provide future property tax assessment rate decreases.
Florida: Amendment 5 passes
A 2008 ruling made the Save Our Homes benefit cap portable, allowing people to transfer their homestead exemption – up to $50,000 – from one property to another. The passing of Amendment 5 extends the transfer period from two years to three years.
Amendment 6 passes
Amendment 6 transfers a disabled veteran’s tax benefits to a surviving spouse, who can keep the tax break until they sell the home, remarry, or pass away.
Georgia: Referendum A passes
The passing of Referendum A exempts Habitat for Humanity and similar charities in Georgia from paying taxes on parcels under development if the purchasers receive interest-free loans.
The “yes” vote also helps Habitat for Humanity itself, allowing the company to save on operating costs while funneling money toward renovation projects, and adding to the local tax revenue.
Louisiana: Amendment 6 passes
The passage of Amendment 6 means seniors, veterans, and those with disabilities can make up to $100,000 a year beginning in 2026 while retaining their homestead benefits – as long as no major improvements are made to the home. The income cap was previously $77,000.
Nebraska: Amendment 2 passes
With an eye on development in poorer areas of the state, the passing of Nebraska’s Amendment 2 increases the repayment period for tax increment financing from 15 to 20 years in areas with an average unemployment rate at 200% or more of the state level, and poverty rates of more than 20%.
New Jersey: Public Question 2 passes
In passing Public Question 2, peacetime veterans and their spouses are now extended the state’s $250 property tax deduction and 100% property tax exemption – benefits previously afforded only to veterans who saw military combat.