Philadelphia06 Mar 2013 06:31 pm


Prepared by the Passyunk Square Civic Association

¬  AVI = Actual value initiative introduced by the City of Philadelphia (“City”) to revamp the system of real property taxes.  All real property in the City has been reassessed based on market value (i.e. what someone might buy it for on the free market).  The market values of all real property in Philadelphia were determined by the City’s Office of Property Assessments  (“OPA”).   The City’s stated purpose for AVI is to make the values of real estate, and thus the tax obligations of property owners in Philadelphia, accurate and fair.

¬  OPA released the new assessments on February 15, 2013.  The assessments relate to tax year 2014.  Each property owner should receive notice of his/her new assessment in the mail.  You can also check the new assessments online at:

¬  The amount of real estate taxes will be determined once the City has determined the tax rate.  The tax rate will be determined when the City has approved the budget for 2014.  The City budget is typically determined around May of the preceding year.  Currently, the minimum tax rate that has been identified by the City is 1.25% of the assessed value of each property.  For example, if your assessment is set at $100,000 and the tax rate is set at 1.32%, your tax obligation will be $1,320.

¬  Owner/occupants can apply for a homestead exemption, by submitting a paper application that was previously mailed, by applying online at, or by calling 215-686-9200 to apply. The deadline to apply for the homestead exemption if July 31, 2013 for applicability in tax year 2014. It should be noted that the homestead exemption measure is not yet finalized, but is currently proposed as a $30,000 reduction of a homeowner’s assessment. For example, if your assessment is set at $100,000 and you are eligible for the homestead exemption, you will be taxed at $70,000 for the period of the exemption. Other proposals for the homestead exemption and other gentrification protection measures are being considered by City Council. The greater the discount measures approved, the higher the tax rate will be.

¬  Property owners may appeal their new tax assessments here  First level of review is conducted by OPA.  You must complete a request form by March 31, 2013 and provide information you think is pertinent to your assessment.  It should be noted that the OPA evaluator may increase, decrease, or keep your assessment the same as a result of the review.

¬  If homeowners are not satisfied with the outcome of the first level of review, they may appeal to the Board of Revision of Taxes (“BRT”).  Formal appeals to BRT are due by October 7, 2013 for tax year 2014.

Contact information for our 1st District Councilman, Mark Squilla:
Mark Squilla
District 1
City Hall, Room 332
Philadelphia, PA 19107-3290
(215)686-3458, (215)686-3459
FAX: (215) 686-1931

For contact information for the rest of City Council or to confirm your council district, please visit

Now that you’ve learned more about AVI, please take a moment to answer the questions found on the survey located here to tell us about your awareness and concerns around the city’s coming AVI implementation. Please submit survey responses by March 25th. If you have any questions or trouble accessing the survey, email us at


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