Property Tax Relief – updated January 2020

Please go to and print an application or go to 230 Government Drive Suite 190 in Wilmington (off Racine Drive) and pick up an application for Homestead Exclusion.  You can also call 798-7300 if you need more information. Our Income Tax program is separate and our volunteers cannot help you with this Homestead Exclusion Property Tax Relief. 

The qualifications for the Homestead Exclusion are as follows:

  • Applicant must be a North Carolina Resident
  • Applicant must be at least 65 years of age or totally and permanently disabled on or before January 1 of the current year
  • Must own and occupy the permanent residence
  • Their income can not exceed $29,500

A person is totally and permanently disabled if the person has a physical or mental impairment that substantially precludes them from obtaining gainful employment and the permanent disability is reasonably certain to continue without improvement through out their life.

Proof of disability must be in the form of a certificate from a physician licensed to practice medicine in North Carolina or from a Government Agency authorized to determine disability.

A disability letter from the Social Security Administration cannot be accepted as proof of disability, unless the letter meets the statutory requirements.

A person’s legal residence is the dwelling, the dwelling site (not to exceed one acre of land) and related improvements. A residence is a house, condo or manufactured home.


Income consists of ALL money received from every source EXCEPT gifts or inheritances. For married applicants residing with their spouses, the income of both spouses must be included whether or not the property is in both names. All W-2’s or 1099’s must be submitted as proof of income.

A qualified owner does not lose the benefit of this exclusion because of a temporary absence from their permanent residence for reasons of health, or because of an extended absence while confined to a rest home or nursing home so long as the residence is unoccupied or occupied by the owner’s spouse or other dependent.

If the sale of your residence or death occurs between January 1 and July 1 of the current year, the exclusion will be removed for the current year’s tax bill.

If the sale of your residence or death occurs after July 1 of the current year, the exclusion will be removed for the following year’s tax bill.

The exclusion amount is the GREATER OF $25,000 OR 50% of the assessed value of the home and up to one acre of land.

An application for this exclusion should be filed during the regular listing period (January 1-31), however, it may be filed and accepted at any time up to June 1. If approved, you do not have to file a new application each year. If there are any changes in income, use of the property and/or ownership, a new application must be filed. Periodically a request from our office will be sent for updated income verification. This information will be required to maintain the benefit.

When property is owned by two or more persons and one or more of them qualifies for this exclusion, each owner must apply separately for their share of the exclusion. Husband and wife are on the same application.

Social Security number information is mandatory and will be used to establish the identification of the applicant, {42 U.S.C. Section 405(c)(2)(C)(i)}.

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2222 South College Road • Wilmington, NC 28403 • Phone 910-798-6400 • Fax 910-798-6411