Real Estate Taxes
Frequently asked Questions
When did quarterly billing begin?
Fiscal Year 2005, beginning July 1, 2004.
Why the change to billing four times a year?
Rutland, like most cities and towns in Massachusetts, cannot afford to pay its bills from July 1 until November 1 without receiving any cash from tax revenue. Quarterly billing was developed several years ago to assist cities and towns by improving cash flow and avoiding costly short-term borrowing.
Who approved this?
November 6, 2003 at a Special Town Meeting, as required by State law.
How will the payments be calculated?
The first two “preliminary” bills will be 25% of the amount billed in the previous year, less any exemptions, deferrals, or abatements. The third and fourth “actual” bills will reflect changes in valuation and annual tax increases including any overrides or debt exclusions. For example:
- FY 2004 tax was $5500, and the taxpayer also had a $1000 water lien, and qualified for a $500 veterans’ exemption
- FY 2004 tax billed $5000 + $1000 - $500 = $6000
- FY 2005 1st & 2nd quarter preliminary bills will be 25% of $6000 or $1500 each
- FT 2005 tax $5700 --- increase due to debt exclusion vote and reflects new valuation, taxpayer has $1000 water lien, and still qualified for $500 exemption
- FY 2005 total tax due is $5700 + $1000 - $500 = $6200
- 1st and 2nd payments were made for $3000 total, $4200 tax remaining
- FY 2005 3rd & 4th quarter bills will be 50% of remaining tax or $2100 each
When will applications for abatements, deferrals and exemptions be accepted?
Deferrals, Exemptions and Abatement will still be submitted to the Assessors’ Office. Applications will be available when the 3rd quarter actual bill is set. The deadline for applications will be February 1.
Time periods covered by payments:
- August 1 (preliminary)
- November 1 (preliminary)
- February 1 (actual)
- May 1 (actual)
- July 1 – September 30
- October 1 – December 31
- January 1 – March 31
- April – June 30
How will interest be charged on overdue payments?
Interest accrues at the rate of 14% per year on delinquent tax amounts, computed from due date. Payments must be received in the Treasurer’s office by the end of the business day on the due date to be considered timely. Postmarks are not accepted as proof of payment – please allow sufficient mailing and processing time when submitting payments via U.S. mail or bank online payment service.