Preservation Tax Credits


The owners of the John Bailey House used Harford County Historic Preservation Tax Credits to remove the false stone cladding and restore the house’s historic exterior.

County Tax Credits for Historic Rehabilitation


Since 2002, county historic preservation tax credits have saved Harford County Historic Landmark owners $40,000 in property taxes. Harford County historic preservation tax credits are only available to those properties that are designated as Harford County Historic Landmarks by the County Council. There is no limit on the number of tax credits granted; however a previous tax credit amount must be exhausted before another credit can be granted.


Benefits: Owners may reduce their county real property tax by a tax credit based on:

  1. The amount their assessment increased because of the rehabilitation or restoration; and
  2. A tax credit equal to 10% of their qualified restoration and rehabilitation expenses (QREs) up to $7,500 (this is based on QREs of $75,000; QREs may exceed $75,000, but the 10% tax credit is capped at $7,500).


Requirements:  The tax credit application is a two-part process:

Part 1: 


Rehabilitation plans must be approved by the Harford County Historic Preservation Commission through an Application for Certificate of Appropriateness prior to conducting any work. All work must meet the Harford County Historic Preservation Design Guidelines. Please review the Tax Credit Application Instructions and Tax Credit Application Example prior to submitting an application. Once the COA is approved, work may begin.


Part 2: 


When the project is complete, the applicant must submit a Certification of Completed Work Application, which certifies the work was completed according to plans approved in the COA and adheres to the Historic Preservation Guidelines. Applicants must also submit and Itemized Expenses spreadsheet. A staff site visit and a review by the Historic Preservation Commission at their monthly public meeting will occur prior to approving the application.


For more information, please contact the Historic Preservation staff at (410)-638-3103 or at

Maryland Historic Preservation Tax Credits

The owner of a certified historic property in Maryland may have the opportunity to earn a state income tax credit on qualified rehabilitation expenditures (QREs). Whether they are planning to rehabilitate their primary or secondary residence or a commercial property, there are state incentives that may help.

Benefits: State tax credits may be combined with County Tax Credits.


For more information visit: MHT Tax Credits Homepage

Federal Rehabilitation Tax Credits

The Federal Historic Preservation Tax Incentives Program offers a tax break for the rehabilitation of historic, income-producing buildings that are determined by the National Park Service to be “certified historic structures.”

The rehabilitation project must be "substantial," which is defined as a minimum of $5,000 or the amount equal to the adjusted basis of the building, whichever is greater. The rehabilitation project typically has to be completed within a 24-month period. 

For more information visit: National Park Service Tax Incentives Homepage