With high real estate taxes on commercial and industrial properties in Cook County, compared to neighboring collar counties, the Cook County Board (“the Board”) has created several programs designed to encourage industrial and commercial development. Specifically, the Board is offering real estate tax incentives for new construction, and the reutilization of vacant buildings.
In Cook County, commercial and industrial property is assessed at 25% of its market value. This means that a property with a market value of $1,000,000 has an assessed value, also known as the property’s taxable value, of $250,000. The tax incentive programs created by Cook County reduce the assessed value of the property from 25% to 10% of its market value for ten years, with the option to renew for an additional term. Therefore, with a tax incentive an industrial or commercial property having a market value of $1,000,000 would have an assessed value of $100,000 resulting in an approximately 60% reduction in real estate taxes for ten years.
In order for a property to be eligible for a tax incentive, the property must be used primarily for industrial or commercial purposes, there must be either new construction or occupancy of a vacant building, there must be an application filed with the Cook County Assessor prior to commencement of construction or occupancy, and there must be a resolution or ordinance consenting to the tax incentive passed by the municipality where the property is located.
Considering Cook County has afforded municipalities with the authority to approve or deny an application for a tax incentive on real estate located within their jurisdiction, several municipalities have incorporated additional eligibility requirements often related to monetary investments into the property and job creation. Therefore, it is important to confer with the municipality where the property is located to ensure that the eligibility criteria can be satisfied.
The Cook County tax incentive programs are a great resource for businesses considering relocating or expanding into Cook County and for real estate developers interested in developing in Cook County. However, eligibility for a Cook County tax incentive requires strict compliance to application procedures and timing requirements, so it is important to commence the application process in the early stages of planning.
For more information on whether you are eligible for a Cook County property tax incentive, contact the attorneys at Rock Fusco & Connelly, LLC.