All applications, unless otherwise stated, must be filed on or before April 1st.
Click on the following link for all up-to-date Property Tax Applications, Rules and Publications.
This application must be made to the Assessor. If you have questions about Property Tax Abatements & Appeals check out Bulletin #10 on the Maine Revenue website.
Abatement Appeal Application
Follow this link for their Informational Packet for Taxpayers which includes their application to appeal.
NOTE: Abatement application must first be made to the Assessor for the current Tax Year before going to the Knox County Board of Assessment Review.
Address/Name Change Form
BETE Application - Service Businesses
Business Equipment Tax Exemption program, better known as BETE, is a 100% property tax exemption program for service based businesses with eligible property that would have been first subject to taxation in Maine on or after 4/1/2008. Check out the guidance document below for "Qualified property" information.
Applications are due May 1st of every year, you must request an extension if needed.
BETE: Retail Equipment Guidance (MRS is updating this document)
BETE/BETR TUTORIAL (MRS is updating this document)
Bulletin No. 28 - Business Equipment Tax Exemption
Notice of Change in Eligibility for Certain Property in the BETE Program, 2/1/2018
BETE Law (see subchapter 4-C)
BETR Application - Retail Businesses
The BETR program is designed to encourage capital investment in Maine. The program reimburses taxpayers for local property taxes paid on most qualified business property. To qualify, qualified business property must have been first placed in service in Maine after April 1, 1995.
The application period for refunds of property tax paid during 2019 begins August 1, 2020 and ends December 31, 2020.
Business Equipment Tax Reimbursement FAQs
1. What can I expect for a refund?
Generally, your refund will be 100% of the property tax paid on eligible property for the first twelve years for which you claim. The reimbursement rate is 75% for the thirteenth year claimed, and then the rate is reduced by five percentage points annually until the rate is 50%.
2. The law states that eligible property must first be placed in service in Maine after April 1, 1995. Does this mean that if I purchase property from another Maine business, it is not eligible for this program?
Not necessarily. Eligible property purchased from another Maine business is still eligible if it was placed in service in Maine by the previous owner. The number of years that reimbursement was claimed by the previous owner, however, must be included on the current owner’s assessor notification.
3. How long does it take to process a reimbursement?
After MRS receives a completed application, reimbursements may take up to 90 days to process.
4. I lease business equipment and I am contractually obligated to pay the taxes even though the leasing company is assessed for the taxes. Can I submit an application for reimbursement?
No, but the lessor may be required to repay you for taxes you paid. The law states that the claimant for reimbursement must be the "person against whom taxes have been assessed;" therefore, being obligated by a private contract to pay taxes assessed to someone else does not qualify a lessee for reimbursement under the BETR program. Lessors that have applied for and received reimbursement for any property taxes assessed on or after April 1, 2002, however, must refund to the lessee any taxes related to the reimbursement that were previously paid by the lessee.
Blind Persons Exemption
Exemption from Local Taxation
Eligibility for exempt status is dictated by state statute. Categories include incorporated religious organizations, benevolent and charitable institutions, literary and scientific institutions, and property owned by federal, state and local government.
In the Farmland program, the property owner is required to have at least five contiguous acres in their parcel of land. The land must be used for farming, agriculture or horticulture and can include woodland and wasteland. Additionally, the parcel must contribute at least $2,000 gross income from farming activities each year.
The Department of Agriculture prepares a valuation guideline for municipalities, which results from studies based on suggested values using a correlation from income stream and market data attributable to agricultural enterprise.
If the property no longer qualifies as farmland, then a penalty will be assessed. The penalty is equal to the taxes that would have been paid in the last five years if the property had not been in farmland, less the taxes that were paid, plus any interest on that balance.
In addition to the Farmland program, a municipality may enact a Voluntary Municipal Farm Support Program to help farmers with their property tax burdens.
See 7 M.R.S. chapter 2-C (Voluntary Municipal Farm Support Program), and the Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry Rule 37 (PDF) (Rules Governing the Voluntary Municipal Farm Support Program).
This program provides a measure of property tax relief for certain individuals that have owned homestead property in Maine for at least 12 months and make the property they occupy on April 1 their permanent residence. Property owners would receive an exemption of $25,000.
1. What is the homestead exemption?
The homestead exemption provides a reduction of up to $25,000 in the value of your home for property tax purposes. To qualify, you must be a permanent resident of Maine, the home must be your permanent residence, you must have owned a home in Maine for the twelve months prior to applying and an application must be filed on or before April 1 with the municipality where the property is located. The exemption applies to any residential property that is assessed as real property. For instance, a mobile home located on a rented lot may qualify for the exemption.
2. Am I a permanent resident?
A permanent resident is an individual who has a true, fixed, and permanent home to which the individual, whenever absent, has the intention of returning. You may have only one permanent residence at a time and, once a permanent residence is established, that residence is presumed to continue until circumstances indicate otherwise. For more information, see 36 M.R.S. § 682.
3. How do I apply for the homestead exemption?
The completed application must be submitted to the municipality where you reside. If your home has more than one owner, only one signature is required. Forms filed after April 1 of any year will apply to the next year’s tax assessment.
4. Do I have to apply for the exemption each year?
No. Once the exemption has been approved, it will remain in effect as long as your ownership and residency status remain unchanged.
5. Can I have more than one exemption?
No. The homestead exemption is limited to only your primary residence; camps, vacation homes, and second residences do not qualify. If you also qualify for a veteran or blind exemption, the homestead exemption is in addition to those exemptions.
6. Why is the exemption on my tax bill less than $15,000?
The $25,000 exemption must be adjusted by the local certified ratio. The local certified ratio is generally the percentage difference between the fair market value of your home and the local assessed value. Since your property taxes are based on the local assessed value, the $25,000 statewide exemption must be adjusted to apply to all property in the state equally. For example, if the local certified ratio in your town is 80%, your homestead exemption is computed in the following manner: $25,000 x .80 = $20,000. Your property value would be reduced by $20,000 by the homestead exemption. If you have further questions regarding the computation of your exemption, please contact your municipality or your local tax assessor. The homestead exemption cannot exceed the total value of your homestead; if the total value of your homestead is $14,000; your homestead exemption cannot exceed $14,000.
7. What should I do if my application is rejected?
If your local assessor determines that you are not entitled to a homestead exemption, the assessor will send you a notice that includes the reasons for denial. You may appeal the denial in writing to the local Board of Assessment Review or to the County Commissioners.
Open Space Land Application
There is no minimum acreage requirement with this program. However, minimum areas and setbacks must be excluded from classification.
The parcel must be preserved or restricted in use to provide a public benefit. Benefits recognized include public recreation, scenic resources, game management, and wildlife habitat.
The municipal assessor is responsible for determining the value placed on open space land. In the determination of that value, the assessor must consider the sale price that a particular open space parcel would command in the open market if it were to remain in the particular category or categories of open space land for which it qualifies.
If an assessor is unable to determine the value of a parcel of open space land based on the valuation method above, the assessor may use the alternative valuation method. Using this method, the assessor reduces the fair market value of an open space land parcel by the cumulative percentage reduction for which the land is eligible according to certain categories. Those categories are as follows:
- Ordinary Open Space - 20% reduction
- Permanently Protected - 30% reduction
- Forever Wild - 20% (cannot be combined with Managed Forest)
- Public Access - 25% reduction
- Managed Forest - 10% reduction (cannot be combined with Forever Wild)
In other words, if the property met all of the above requirements, the owner would see a cumulative reduction of up to 95% on the classified land.
If property no longer qualifies as open space, a penalty will be assessed using the same methodology as is used for removal from the Tree Growth program (see below).
Personal Property Schedule Form
2021 Personal Property Form - not available yet
Property Tax Fairness Credit
Maine Individual Income Tax SUMMARY
Eligible Maine taxpayers may receive a portion of the property tax or rent paid during the tax year on the Maine individual income tax return whether they owe Maine income tax or not. If the credit exceeds the amount of your individual income tax due for the tax year, the excess amount of credit will be refunded to you.
Who is eligible for the Property Tax Fairness Credit? Homeowners or renters who meet all of the following requirements:
- Were Maine residents during any part of the tax year;
- Owned or rented a home in Maine during any part of the tax year and lived in that home during the year as a primary residence;
- Paid property tax or rent on the primary residence in Maine during the tax year;
- Meet certain income and property tax and/or rent paid limitations during the tax year.
- Are not married filing separately.
How does someone apply for the refundable credit? To claim the credit, file Form 1040ME and Schedule PTFC or Schedule PTFC/STFC for the tax year during which the property tax or rent was paid.
Is assistance available to apply for the credit? Yes, Maine Revenue Services will assist taxpayers with Form 1040ME and Schedule PTFC or Schedule PTFC/STFC. For help, call 207-626-8475 weekdays 8:00am to 5:00pm or visit Maine Revenue Services at 51 Commerce Drive, Augusta, ME 04330, weekdays 8:00am 4:30pm. Closed on State recognized holidays.
Where can taxpayers get Form 1040ME and Schedule PTFC? Forms are available at Electronic Request Form or call 207-624-7894 to request that a printed form be mailed to you.
E-mail Questions or Call 207-626-8475 for additional information.
Renewable Energy Equipment Exemption
This program exempts renewable energy equipment, such as solar panels, from property tax beginning April 1, 2020. Taxpayers must apply for the credit by April 1 of the first year the exemption is requested.
Renewable Energy Equipment Exemption
Tree Growth Application
This program provides a benefit for owners of at least 10 acres of forested land used for commercial harvesting. A forest management and harvest plan must be prepared and a sworn statement to that effect submitted with the application. Applications include a map of the parcel indicating the forest type breakdown as well as all other areas not classified as tree growth.
Each year, the State Tax Assessor determines the 100% valuation per acre for each forest type by county.
If forestland no longer meets the criteria of eligibility or the landowner opts to withdraw from Tree Growth classification, a penalty will be assessed. Depending upon the length of time that the parcel has been enrolled, the penalty is between 20% and 30% of the difference between the 100% Tree Growth value and the fair market value.
If you have questions about the Tree Growth application check out Bulletin #19 on the Maine Revenue website.
For a list of current Tree Growth rates, see Rule 202.
A veteran who served during a recognized war period and is 62 years or older; or, is receiving 100% disability as a Veteran; or, became 100% disabled while serving, is eligible for $6,000.
Veteran Exemption Application
Veteran Exemption Widowed Spouse, Minor Child, or Widowed Parent
If you have questions about Tax Exemptions for Veterans and families check out Bulletin #7 on the Maine Revenue website.
"Working waterfront land" means a parcel or portion of a parcel of land abutting tidal waters or is located in the intertidal zone (located between the high and low water mark) the use of which is more than 50% related to providing access to or in support of the conduct of commercial fishing (including commercial aquaculture) activities.
Working waterfront land used predominantly (more than 90%) as working waterfront is eligible for a 20% reduction from just value. Working waterfront land used primarily (more than 50%) as working waterfront is eligible for a 10% reduction from just value. Working waterfront land that is permanently protected from a change in use through deeded restriction is eligible for the an additional 30% reduction.
If property no longer qualifies as working waterfront, a penalty will be assessed using the same methodology as is used for removal from Tree Growth classification.
Currently there are no properties in Camden enrolled in this program.