Revitalization Ordinance Criteria


Program Expired September 1, 2010 - New applications no longer accepted.

Partial Tax Exemption Revised Ordinance Criteria & Application Procedures
(Amendment Effective September 1, 2007)

Article 24, Chapter 4 of the Fairfax County Code, Partial Tax Exemption Ordinance, providing for the renovation, rehabilitation or replacement of multifamily, commercial or industrial property, was amended by the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors effective September 1, 2007. As authorized by state law, the Board provides a partial tax exemption incentive to improve and maintain the quality of certain types of property in the County. The Department of Tax Administration (DTA) is the administering agency of this program. The following is a summary of the application requirements. The original ordinance was approved by the Board of Supervisors on June 23, 1997, and was effective on September 1, 1997. That ordinance was amended by the Board of Supervisors July 1, 1999 and September 1, 2002. The current ordinance expires September 1, 2010.

Application Requirements:

1. File the Application for Partial Tax-Exemption with the Fairfax County Department of Tax Administration (DTA), Suite 223, 12000 Government Center Parkway, VA 22035 when you apply for a building permit. A building permit # is required on the application. A nonrefundable fee of $250.00 is required to be attached, made payable to the County of Fairfax. [Note: Prior to filing the application, owners should contact DTA staff to review the ordinance criteria and determine if the planned improvements may qualify]. The ordinance amendment provides for different criteria for Multifamily property located throughout the county and Commercial/Industrial property located within a Commercial Revitalization District. Refer to attached Table A for criteria. Call DTA staff for assistance at 703-222-8234. Current ordinance criteria are shown on website: www.fairfaxcounty.gov/dta.

2. Upon DTA's receipt of the application, the owner will be contacted to schedule an appraisal inspection of the property by a County appraiser to determine the base (building) value, and to review the number of Moderate Rental Apartment units (multifamily) or total square footage (commercial) of the existing structure undergoing improvements. Improvements made prior to the date DTA receives the application are not eligible for the partial tax exemption. The base value is determined by DTA after an interior and exterior inspection of the structure, prior to commencement of property improvements.

3. The Application will expire December 31st of the 3rd calendar year following the year in which the application was submitted. If the planned improvements do not meet the requirements for the partial tax exemption by the expiration date, the application will expire and a new application and fee will be required. Then, a new base building value will be established based on the condition of the building as of the date of DTA's base appraisal.

4. Final determination of qualification for a partial tax exemption is not made until the construction is complete. DTA will make a final appraisal upon substantial completion of work on the structure to establish the structure's final building value. An owner must submit prior to November 1st of the calendar year in which revitalization of a structure is complete, a written request to DTA for inspection of the structure to determine if it qualifies for the partial tax exemption for the following year. The request for final appraisal must be made before November 1st for partial tax exemption in the calendar year following construction completion.

5. Real estate taxes must be paid. Failure to pay all real estate taxes when due will result in forfeiture of the partial tax exemption for that year, in addition to other penalties as applicable by law. Ability to apply for this program will expire September 1, 2010. Any delinquent taxes must be paid prior to DTA accepting an application. The property will be inspected annually for January 1 assessments. Taxes will be assessed and payable at 100% during the construction phase (i.e. prior to effective date of an approved partial tax exemption).

6. A copy of the County partial tax exemption ordinance and program filing procedures can be obtained for reference by visiting the DTA web site at www.fairfaxcounty.gov/dta or by calling 703-222-8234. You may also visit our office located at the Government Center, Suite 223, 12000 Government Center Parkway.

7. Qualifying property owners shall receive a partial tax exemption of the general (base rate) real estate taxes associated with the increase in structural value due to renovation, rehabilitation or replacement. This tax exemption will be the difference in the value amount between the base improvement value and final improvement value established.

  • The tax exemption will transfer with the property. No tax exemption will be granted on land value.
  • All revitalization improvements must conform to existing County regulations.
  • The amount of tax exemption will be fixed and will not increase over time, however may be reduced if the property improvement value declines during the partial tax exemption period.
  • Real estate taxes will be assessed and due at 100% during the construction phase (i.e. prior to final value appraisal).
  • Owners must submit a detailed list of their actual improvement costs to DTA for review.
  • The time period for the partial tax exemption varies by property type.

8. Refer to the ordinance for additional definitions:

  • "commercial or industrial structure" means real property improved with a structure or sub structure that is used for commercial or industrial purposes, but that term does not include any hotel, except when a hotel is included as a use within a Mixed-Use Project.;
  • "commercial revitalization district" means those commercial revitalization districts specified in Appendix 7 to Chapter 112 (Zoning Ordinance) of the Fairfax County Code, the boundaries of which are established by the official zoning map. [Note: The 5 commercial revitalization districts are: Annandale, Bailey's Crossroads/Seven Corners, McLean, Richmond Highway, and Springfield. Contact the Department of Tax Administration to verify if a tax parcel is located within a Revitalization District; and
  • "total square footage" (commercial & industrial) is the exterior building dimensions typically used.
  • "mixed-use project" means a development that includes two or more physically integrated uses, such as retail, office, or apartment uses.

Completed application forms should be mailed to:

Fairfax County Department of Tax Administration
Attn: Real Estate Division, Suite 223
12000 Government Center Parkway
Fairfax, VA 22035

Questions? Call 703-222-8234

Visit the DTA Web Site at: www.fairfaxcounty.gov/dta
E-Mail Address: dtared@fairfaxcounty.gov
DTA FAX #: 703-324-4935

 

TABLE A. SUMMARY OF FAIRFAX COUNTY PARTIAL TAX EXEMPTION CRITERIA FOR CERTAIN REHABILITATED, RENOVATED, AND REPLACEMENT OF COMMERCIAL, INDUSTRIAL AND MULTIFAMILY STRUCTURES

Effective September 1, 2007

[Partial Tax Exemption Ordinance Amendment, Real Estate Division, Department of Tax Administration]

ORDINANCE CRITERIA Sec. 4-24-3.1 Commercial and Industrial Structures Within Revitalization Districts Only

Sec. 4-24-2.1 Multifamily Structures Countywide

(Refer to Form A)

Minimum Age, Eligibility, & Multifamily Structure Criteria

Minimum age of 25 years old;

Previous additions to a main structure that are less than 25 years old are not eligible for additional renovation abatements.

Eligibility is limited to criteria within Revitalization Districts

Minimum age of 20 years;

Structure must contain 6 or more dwelling units.

Eligibility and criteria is countywide.

Market Value Criteria Commercial or industrial minimum increase in market value is 25%. Multifamily minimum increase in market value is 25%.

 

Square Footage Criteria

No maximum sq. ft. limit. No maximum sq. ft. limit.
Special Eligibility Criteria If total floor area of a commercial or industrial structure that is substantially rehabilitated, renovated, or replaced is more than 80,000 sq. ft., then the owner of such property shall be issued a partial tax exemption only if the improved or replacement structure is a mixed use project.

Number of Moderate Rental Apartment units must remain the same, except,

If number of Moderate Rental Apartments is less than 6.25%, then the owner must maintain a minimum of 6.25%.

Refer to ordinance criteria for other rent criteria.

Partial Tax Exemption
Time Period
Partial tax exemption time period is 100% for 12 years. Partial tax exemption time period is 10 years @ 100% for each year.

 

FORM A. MULTIFAMILY STRUCTURE PARTIAL TAX EXEMPTION CRITERIA
FAIRFAX COUNTY

Effective September 1, 2007

[Amendment to Partial Tax Exemption Ordinance, Real Estate Division, Department of Tax Administration]

Note: Multifamily structures located countywide are eligible for the program. The following "Moderate Rental Apartment" criteria must be met. Applicants are to submit Table 1 with their application.

1. Any rental residential dwelling unit within a Multifamily Structure that is rented or leased to a household participating in the federal Housing Choice Voucher Program (formerly known as "Section 8") or other comparable federal housing subsidy program administered by the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development is considered to be a Moderate Rental Apartment.

2. "Moderate Rental Apartment" means a rental residential dwelling unit within a Multifamily Structure for which the annual rent, based on a total of 12 monthly payments, does not exceed the Area Median Gross Income ("AMGI") for a family of four for the Washington D.C. Metropolitan Statistical Area, as determined annually by the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development, as adjusted by multiplying the AMGI by factors determined annually by the County Department of Housing and Community Development ("DHCD"). For example, for calendar year 2007, the DHCD factors are as follows:

Size of Rental Unit:
Multiply AMGI by:
Annual rent for efficiency housing unit
0.1260
Annual rent for one-bedroom housing unit
0.1440
Annual rent for two-bedroom housing unit
0.1620
Annual rent for three-bedroom housing unit
0.1800
Annual rent for four-or-more bedroom unit
0.1944

3. The total number of housing units that are designated as Moderate Rental Apartment units in any particular Multifamily Structure is the total of the annual average of units qualified by rent level as computed above using the Area Median Gross Income (AMGI) factor and the total of the annual average of units rented or leased to a household participating in the Housing Choice Voucher Program. However, any rental unit which qualifies under both the rent level and the Voucher Program shall be counted as one Moderate Rental Apartment unit.

4. In the event that the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development discontinues the publication of the AMGI for a family of four in the Washington D.C. Metropolitan Statistical Area, then the Director shall determine whether a rental residential dwelling unit is a Moderate Rental Apartment by using the median gross income for a family of four as determined by the Fairfax County Redevelopment and Housing Authority, as adjusted using the factors set forth above.

5. In order to qualify for the partial tax exemptions authorized, after the rehabilitation, renovation, or replacement of a Multifamily structure, at a minimum, the owner of that property shall maintain a number of Moderate Rental Apartment units within that multifamily structure that is equal or greater than the larger of:

(A) the same number and types of Moderate Rental Apartment units that were available at that property throughout the twelve-month period prior to the rehabilitation, renovation, or replacement, or

(B) a percentage of Moderate Rental Apartment units equal to 6.25 percent of the total number of units within the multifamily structure, apportioned ratably by number of bedroom types described in Section 4-24-1 (of the ordinance), rounded to the nearest whole integer.

6. Failure to maintain at least the same number and number of bedroom types of Moderate Rental Apartment units shall result in the forfeiture of eligibility for any partial tax exemption otherwise authorized for the year in which that failure occurred, and for all years remaining in the period for which partial tax exemption otherwise would have been available. The following two examples are given for illustration:

Example No. 1: If a multifamily structure contained eight one-bedroom housing units and twelve two-bedroom housing units that were within the definition of Moderate Rental Apartment prior to a qualifying improvement or replacement, then in order to receive the partial tax exemption provided, the owner of the improved or replaced multifamily structure shall maintain at least eight one-bedroom and twelve two-bedroom housing units that qualify as Moderate Rental Apartment units, provided that the number of moderate rental units was greater than or equal to 6.25 percent of the total number of units with the multifamily structure by number of bedroom types, rounded to the nearest whole integer.

Example No. 2: If a multifamily structure contained no Moderate Rental Apartment Units prior to a qualifying improvement or replacement, then in order to receive the partial tax exemption provided, the owner of the improved or replaced multifamily structure shall maintain a minimum of 6.25 percent of its housing units as Moderate Rental Apartments.


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