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Property Tax


Tax Freeze

What is Tax Freeze?

The Tax Freeze Program was created to help seniors (65 and older) by freezing the tax amount on their primary residence for future years. Mobile homes are included. For additional information, download the latest Tax Relief-Tax Freeze Brochure.
Who will administer the program?

The Office of City Treasurer will administer the program for the City of Chattanooga property taxes.

 

Do I Qualify for Tax Freeze?
You may be eligible for the Tax Freeze Program if you meet certain age, income, and residency requirements. 

  • Are you 65 or older?
  • Do you own and live in a home in the City of Chattanooga that is your primary residence?
  • Is the total income for you, your spouse, and all parties listed on your property deed less than $38,720 for 2016?

You must be the owner and be the principal residence - not to exceed 5 acres - and only the portion of property used for residential structure

Please note that any improvements to the property that change the assessment value will be factored into an increased tax amount, regardless of your tax freeze status.

Legislation requires the income of the applicant's spouse to be included, regardless of ownership and regardless of whether or not the spouse is living on the property.

More information can be found at the Tennessee Comptroller of the Treasury's website: http://www.comptroller.tn.gov/pa/taxfreeze.asp

Click here for copy of legislation.

How do I apply?

Applications must be received by April 5 for a given tax year. Applicant must reapply annually.

Click here for applications and here for instructions or call the Treasurer’s Office at (423) 643-7262. Signed applications must be postmarked no later than April 5, 2018 and sent to:

City of Chattanooga

Office of City Treasurer

101 E. 11th Street, Suite 100

Chattanooga, TN 37402

Please provide a copy of your last tax return or complete the online Affidavit verifying income if no tax return is available.

Frequently Asked Questions

Tax Freeze

1. Will there be a lien placed on my property if I accept the freeze?

   No. The City does not place a lien on property where tax freeze has been granted.

2. If my taxes are paid by a mortgage company can I still apply for the freeze?

   Yes. For qualified applicants, mortgage companies are provided with frozen tax amounts or the regular base tax (whichever is lower) on an annual basis.

3. Can I receive tax freeze if I am currently receiving tax relief?

   Yes. You may receive both the tax freeze and tax relief as long as you meet the requirements set for each.

4. Do all owners have to be 65 in order to apply?

   No. Only one owner must be 65 years of age or older by December 31, 2017 to apply.

5. If my property is listed as a life estate can I still qualify?

   Yes. In order to determine eligibility, proof of the life estate may be required when application is made. Contact the Treasurer’s Office at (423) 643-7262 for further information.

6. Can I transfer the property tax freeze from one property to another?

   No. If you sell or purchase a property you must reapply and establish a new base tax amount.

7. How is ownership verified?

   Acceptable ownership evidence includes a deed (warranty, quitclaim, etc), probated will, title, or bill of sale for a mobile home, divorce decree, land contract, or trust.

8. What if I owned the property for only part of the year?

   An owner does not have to own the property on January 1 of the tax year. However, an applicant must own the property for any portion of the year for which application is made and must retain through the application deadline.

9. My spouse is not listed as an owner on the deed. Do I need to include my spouse's income?

   Yes. New legislation requires the income of the applicant's spouse to be included, regardless of ownership or residency.

10. What amount of tax becomes the frozen tax amount?

     The amount paid in the year the owner first qualifies. (This does not include water quality fees.)

 

What is Tax Relief?

    The Office of City Treasurer administers a state funded Tax Relief Program to help taxpayers 65 or older, disabled citizens, and veterans pay their property taxes. For qualifying applicants, the state will pay all or part of the property taxes on their home (including mobile homes) depending on the maximum amount of Tax Relief credit given in relation to the taxes due.  Please note that Tax Relief benefits are available for both city and county taxes!

For additional information, download the latest Property Tax Relief Program brochure.

The Tax Relief Credit
The Tax Relief Credit is a rebate and does not have to be paid back unless it is later determined that the recipient was not eligible for the program.  The income limit for elderly and disabled is $29,180. There is no income limit for disabled veterans. For 2017, the maximum tax relief credit is:

  • $131.58 elderly and disabled
  • $559.93 disabled vet, widow(er) of disabled vet, or spouse of a soldier killed in action


Do I Qualify for Tax Relief?
For elderly, one must be 65 by December 31st. Age limit does not apply to a disabled homeowner, disabled veteran or widow(er) of a disabled veteran homeowner.

Maximum income for application, spouse, and all owners of the property is 29,180; Income limit does not apply to disabled veterans or their widow(er)s.

Maximum market value on which tax relief is calculated: 27,000 for elderly and disabled homeowners; 175,000 for disabled veterans or their widow(ers)s.

*For disabled homeowners, disabled veterans or their widow(er)s, they must be totally and permanently disabled on or before December 31st.


Apply for Tax Relief
To obtain an application for Tax Relief on 2017 taxes, please contact the Office of City Treasurer at (423) 643-7262. The deadline to apply is April 5, 2018.

Tax Relief Frequently Asked Questions

1. When can I start the application process?

Applications can be submitted October 1st through April 5th

2. Are tax relief recipients exempt from paying property taxes?

No. Tax relief is payment by the State of Tennessee to reimburse homeowners meeting certain eligibility requirements, for a part or all of paid property taxes. Tax relief is not an exemption. You still receive your tax bill(s) and are responsible for paying your property taxes each year.

3. How much tax relief will I get?

The amount varies depending on your property assessment and your city rate.

4. Will my tax relief check be the same each year?

The amount may vary year to year depending on your property assessment and your county or city tax rate.

5. Can I receive relief for more than one property?

No. You can only receive tax relief on your primary residence in any given tax year.

6. What happens next year if I am approved for tax relief?

You will receive a property tax relief voucher when you receive your property tax bill(s). You will need to present the voucher(s) to the City Treasurer before the deadline date along with payment of any balance due.

7. Is a veteran being rated 100% service-connected the same as having a total and permanent rating from a service-connected disability?

No.

8. Can I receive tax relief if I am unable to provide my spouse's information/income/signature?

No. The income of the applicant's spouse is required to determine eligibility regardless of residency or ownership.

9. How can I get a mobile home title in my name?

A mobile home title is obtained by contracting your County Court Clerk.

The CABR 2017 is divided into five major sections: Introduction, Guidelines, Financial Overview, Human Resource Administration, and the Appendix.

CABR 2017

 

Section A: Introduction - gives a profile of Chattanooga with selected useful service, demographic, economical, and statistical information, a message from the Finance Administrator, an organizational chart, and City officials.

Section B: Guidelines - informs you of guidelines and rules adhered to by the finance department of Chattanooga, as well as budget policies, model, procedures, a calendar, and the budget ordinance.

Section C: Financial Overview - summarizes the overall financial condition of Chattanooga, where we have been, where we are, and where we are going. This is followed by detailed discussions of program functions such as General Government, Finance and Administration, Public Safety, Public Works, Parks & Recreation, Debt Services, Capital Outlay, and Social Services.

Section D: Human Resource Administration - gives an outlook on the benefits provided by the City of Chattanooga, position changes, its personnel detail, and pay plan tables.

Section E: Appendix - includes a glossary.

Do you have a fast internet connection? If so you may choose to view the CABR in its entirety by selecting this link. CABR (23.1 MB - PDF Document)

If you don't have a fast internet connection, we have divided the CABR into five separate files. You can choose any of the following:
Section A: Introduction (8.2 MB - PDF File)
Section B: Guidelines (5.6 MB- PDF File)
Section C: Financial Overview (7.9 MB - PDF File)
Section D: HR Administration (1 MB- PDF File)
Section E: Appendix (846 KB - PDF File)

The Online Sewer Fee Customer Portal is being updated and will be available for use at a later time.  Please check back again.

The CABR 2016 is divided into five major sections: Introduction, Guidelines, Financial Overview, Human Resource Administration, and the Appendix.

CABR 2016 CoverSection A: Introduction - gives a profile of Chattanooga with selected useful service, demographic, economical, and statistical information, a message from the Finance Administrator, an organizational chart, and City officials.

Section B: Guidelines - informs you of guidelines and rules adhered to by the finance department of Chattanooga, as well as budget policies, model, procedures, a calendar, and the budget ordinance.

Section C: Financial Overview - summarizes the overall financial condition of Chattanooga, where we have been, where we are, and where we are going. This is followed by detailed discussions of program functions such as General Government, Finance and Administration, Public Safety, Public Works, Parks & Recreation, Debt Services, Capital Outlay, and Social Services.

Section D: Human Resource Administration - gives an outlook on the benefits provided by the City of Chattanooga, position changes, its personnel detail, and pay plan tables.

Section E: Appendix - includes a glossary.

Do you have a fast internet connection? If so you may choose to view the CABR in its entirety by selecting this link. CABR (31.9 MB - PDF Document)

If you don't have a fast internet connection, we have divided the CABR into five separate files. You can choose any of the following:
Section A: Introduction (6.4 MB - PDF File)
Section B: Guidelines (14.4 MB- PDF File)
Section C: Financial Overview (8.2 MB - PDF File)
Section D: HR Administration (1 MB- PDF File)
Section E: Appendix (1MB - PDF File)

SEWER BILLING CHANGES BEGIN JUNE 29, 2015

The City of Chattanooga will process sewer bills internally starting in July. You will experience minimal changes to how you pay your bill, and new walk-in payment locations have been set up for your convenience. You will be able to pay online, at City Hall and at First Tennessee Bank branches, all with no processing fees. Please note these changes:


• Make payments payable to the City of Chattanooga
• If you send payments through your bank, update the address with your bank when you receive your first City-issued bill. Send payments to:

City of Chattanooga
Waste Resources Division
PO Box 591
Chattanooga, TN 37401-0591

• If you are enrolled in electronic billing, you will continue to receive an email when your account is updated
• If you have automatic recurring payments, you will have no interruption
• No July payments will be taken at current walk-in locations after July 15, 2015
• New walk-in payment locations include Hamilton County First Tennessee Bank locations and City Hall Treasurer's Office

For more information regarding sewer billing, call 311 or email 311 at 311@chattanooga.gov.

ACCESS CURRENT SEWER PAYMENT PORTAL

Check back for the new payment portal, which will be in place on July 1, 2015.

City Treasurer's Office
101 East 11th Street Suite 100
Chattanooga, TN 37402  (map)
(423) 643-7262

Theresa Lee, City Treasurer
E-mail:
tlee@chattanooga.gov

Sharon Morris, Assistant Treasurer
E-mail:
morris_s@chattanooga.gov

For inquiries regarding property taxes

423-643-7262 or email ptax@chattanooga.gov

For inquiries regarding sewer fees

Dial 311 or 423-643-6311 or email 311@chattanooga.gov

For inquiries regarding business license

423 643-7260 or email busl@chattanooga.gov

For inquiries regarding sewer fees

 

Dial 311 or 423-643-6311 or email 311@chattanooga.gov