There are an estimated 77,000 military veterans who live in Fairfax County, home of Fort Belvoir, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Recognizing the number of veterans in the area Fairfax County has a number of programs designed to assist county residents. One of the biggest benefits is the real estate tax exemption available to 100% disabled veterans and surviving spouses of service member killed in combat.
Though the exemption for 100% disabled veterans has been in place since 2011 the benefits were not extended to surviving spouses until January 2015. A surviving spouse who has not remarried may be eligible for an exemption on real estate taxes for a principal residence or up to 1 acre of land. One of my clients who purchased a home in late 2015, recently received notification of their exemption, saving the family around $200 a month on their real estate tax bill.
According to the state law “the exemption applies to a dwelling with an assessed value in the most recently ended tax year that does not exceed the average assessed value for such year for dwellings in the locality that are zoned as single family residential.” The county provides an update of average assessed values every year and will notify the disabled veterans and surviving spouses of the amount of tax exemption they will receive. In many cases it will be 100% of the real estate tax bill.
If you are a resident of Fairfax County VA and think you qualify for the tax exemption make sure to check out the official information on the Fairfax County Veterans Benefits website.