Taxes & Credits
Several credits are available to homeowners to reduce property taxes in Baltimore City.
Properties in Baltimore City are levied a Baltimore City property tax and a Maryland State property tax based on their annual assessment from the Maryland State Department of Assessments and Taxation. Property taxes are generally used for things like public safety, infrastructure, sanitation, education, transportation, health and social services, recreation, and many other resident benefits. Every property owner also has the right to appeal their property tax assessment within 45 days of the date of notice.
In Maryland, each property owner is levied a property tax by the state and by their county (or city, in the case of Baltimore City). The Maryland State Department of Assessments and Taxation (MD SDAT) estimates the value of a property, and the county or city is responsible for billing and collecting the taxes.
Baltimore City is divided into three sections so that one-third of city properties are assessed by MD SDAT each year. Property owners receive an assessment notice every December detailing the assessed value of their land and property.
Baltimore City’s property taxes are decreasing for homeowners! In an effort to reduce the property tax rate “20 cents by 2020” (a strategy outlined by former Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake’s administration in 2012), the Baltimore City Council passed legislation approving the Targeted Homeowners Property Tax Credit. The City’s Board of Estimates approves a new credit amount each year which is then applied against the improved value of owner-occupied properties.
In Fiscal Year 2020, the tax rate for homeowners in owner-occupied properties has been reduced by an estimated 20 cents per $100 of assessed property value. Non-owner-occupied properties are charged $2.248 for every $100 of assessed property value by the City of Baltimore. The State of Maryland charges all property owners $0.112 for every $100 of assessed property value.
There are four special Community Benefits Districts within Baltimore City. Properties within the boundaries of these districts are levied a tax surcharge which covers additional safety, sanitation, and other services.
The tax rate for the Midtown Community Benefits District (which includes parts of Bolton Hill, Charles North, Madison Park, and Mount Vernon) is $0.132 per $100 of assessed property value. The tax rate for the Charles Village Community Benefits District is $0.132 per $100 of assessed property value. The tax rate for the Waterfront District is $0.170 per $100 of assessed property value. The tax rate for the Downtown Management Authority is $0.2239 of $100 of assessed property value.
Owners normally receive a “Notice of Assessment” every three years, showing both the old market and new market value of their property. The new market value reflects the market conditions of the property since its time of last assessment.
The assessment appeal process is intended to assure an accurate property valuation. If you believe the value placed upon your property is higher (or lower) than it should be—and you can provide supporting evidence (such as sales information for properties comparable to your own)— it may be in your best interest to appeal.
The first step to appealing a “Notice of Assessment” is to sign and return the appeal form within 45 days of the date of the notice. If you purchase a property, and the property is transferred after Jan. 1 but before July 1, you may file an appeal within 60 days of the transfer date.
The Maryland State Department of Assessment and Taxation provides a step-by-step assessment appeal guide on its website.
Have more questions about Baltimore City tax credits?
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