NJ’s $2 Billion Property Tax Rebate Program Opening: How to Get Paid

NEW JERSEY — It can take eight months to get your money, but state officials have opened up deposit options for New Jersey’s new property tax rebate program.

Governor Phil Murphy’s administration has begun sending out instructions to eligible residents for the Affordable New Jersey Communities for Homeowners and Renters (ANCHOR) program. Taxpayers will be able to file their return online, by mail or by telephone by December 30.

Online filing is now available via the New Jersey Department of Treasury website. The telephone deposit system has been unavailable since Tuesday morning, according to the Treasury. Tenants requesting relief will not have the phone option.

The State will pay the rebates by check or direct deposit “no later than May 2023 to allow time for the processing and validation of requests”. The Treasury also has limits on the number of checks it can issue each week.

The average New Jersey property tax bill in New Jersey was $9,284 in 2021 – among the highest in the nation. Approximate figures for the ANCHOR program represent an average annual benefit of $971 for 2 million inhabitants.

ANCHOR replaces the Homestead Rebate as New Jersey’s primary property tax relief program. While Murphy touted the new program as key to making New Jersey more affordable, Republican lawmakers called it a gimmick that doesn’t go far enough amid high taxes and inflation.

Here’s what else you need to know:

1. How do I know if I am eligible for the ANCHOR discount?

Refer to your gross income for the 2019 tax year. Here’s why: The Homestead Rebate program had a slight lag in the tax year in which taxpayers benefited.

New Jersey residents can apply as landlords if, on October 1, 2019, they:

  • owned a house
  • owned a condominium and paid property taxes on your unit
  • were a resident shareholder of a co-operative housing project
  • were a resident of a continuing care retirement community and your continuing care contract requires you to pay the proportionate share of property taxes attributable to your unit

Homeowners are not eligible if their residence was completely exempt from paying property taxes or if they made PILOT (Payments in Lieu of Tax) payments.

Unlike the Homestead discount, renters can qualify for the ANCHOR program. Taxpayers can qualify as tenants if, on October 1, 2019, they:

  • rented an apartment, condominium or house
  • rented or owned a mobile home located in a mobile home park

But people who lived in tax-exempt, subsidized or on-campus housing are not eligible.

The following income levels qualify for a refund:

  • Owners with household income less than $150,000
  • Owners with household income between $150,000 and $250,000
  • Tenants with incomes up to $150,000

2. How much benefit can I receive?

Homeowners with a household income of less than $150,000 can get a $1,500 rebate. Homeowners with household income between $150,000 and $250,000 can receive $1,000. Tenants with incomes up to $150,000 will receive $450 each.

With approximately 2 million people affected, recipients of the ANCHOR rebate will receive an average of $971 for this year.

3. How can I receive a paper application?

Eligible homeowners and tenants will be able to apply online, by phone or by mail, similar to the Homestead Rebate process.

To receive a paper application, Log in here using your ID number and PIN and print it out. Or call the ANCHOR hotline at 1-888-238-1233 to order one.

Taxpayers can mail it in or you have the option of uploading a completed copy of your paper application using the state’s electronic filing system. They may attach supporting documents to the request.

Check here to see if you are required to submit a paper application.

4. What should I file?

Taxpayers will need their identification number and PIN assigned to their principal residence (primary residence) that they owned or occupied on October 1, 2019. Prepare with the following:

  • Valid tax identification number and, if applicable, the tax identification number of your spouse or civil union partner
  • New Jersey gross income from line 29 of your 2019 NJ-1040. (If you are not required to file an NJ-1040, indicate “0”.)
  • 2019 filing status
  • Date of birth and, if applicable, date of birth of your spouse/civil union partner

Registrants will also receive the following questions:

  • You owned the property with someone who is not your spouse/CU partner. If so, what percentage did you hold?
  • The property had more than one unit. If yes, what percentage of the property did you use as your primary residence?

5. Where can I find more information?

Visit the ANCHOR Webpageor call the ANCHOR hotline at 1-888-238-1233.

The Taxation Division will also host a webinar from 10 a.m. to noon Wednesday on ANCHOR and other property tax relief programs. Click here to join.

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