Back in 2016, the New York STAR Program (School Tax Assessment Relief) went through some changes that continue to impact certain homeowners. To find out more about what STAR is, please visit our “How The Star Program Helps Lower Your School Taxes” blog.
Due to the changes made to the program in 2016, those who are participating in the STAR program are now in one of two categories: home owners who receive a school property tax exemption and home owners who receive STAR refund checks.
If you purchased your home before March 1, 2015, you will continue to receive your STAR benefit in the form of a school property tax exemption.
For those who are currently receiving the savings directly off of your school taxes, you will continue to do so with no changes. (This includes those who are escrowed and paying a lower monthly school tax payment).
The changes to how you receive this benefit will only impact those who purchased a home in NY on or after the March 1st, 2015 deadline.
Beginning with the 2016-2017 school year, those that are subject to the new STAR program will receive a STAR check directly from New York State instead of receiving the school property tax exemption. This change only applies to homeowners that purchased a home in New York on or after March 1, 2015.
The benefit amount will remain the same whether you are grandfathered in and receive the exemption directly off your taxes, or you receive the check back from New York State.
Property owners who are subject to this change will receive a letter from their local Assessor outlining this new process and how to apply to receive their rebate check.
Think you should have received a refund check but haven’t gotten it yet? Find out when checks were mailed to your area here.
Despite this change to how the benefit is delivered, the qualifications for STAR remain the same.
Based on when you purchased your home, (or if you are planning to purchase and want to review the procedure), you will have to register for STAR by filling out the appropriate paperwork. The new changes are in affect for those who are currently purchasing a home. You are able to register online.
Editor’s note: This content was originally published in 2016, but has been updated as of September 2019.