A South Carolina Military Homeowner Tax Break We Can All Get Behind

by | Apr 14, 2016 | Legal Tips

In March 2014, South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley signed into law a bill that gave military homeowners a tax break on homes that they could not sell before being deployed or re-stationed. South Carolina Code §12-43-220(C)(2)(v)(B) and (C) allows service members to pay owner-occupied property tax rate of 4% instead of the  6% rental rate. In addition to helping to relieve the burden of a service member being deployed or presented with a permanent change in station the law demonstrates that South Carolina is the region most military friendly state which is very important during base realignment and closures.

Section 220(2)(v)(B) of the code states that an active duty member who is receiving the special assessment rate for owner-occupied (4%), who receives orders for a permanent change of station (PCS) or a temporary duty assignment (TDY) for at least one year, retains the four percent assessment ratio and all other applicable exemptions so long as the owner remains on active duty, regardless of the owner’s subsequent relocation and regardless of any rental income attributable to the property.

Section (C)(1) of the code also holds that an active duty member  who receives orders for a permanent change of station (PCS) or a temporary duty assignment (TDY) for at least one year, may claim the four percent assessment ratio and other  exemptions for two residential properties so long as the owner attempts to sell the first property within thirty days of acquiring the second residence. The service member must continue to attempt to sell the first acquired residence in any year in which the four percent assessment ratio is claimed.

Please advise your service member at closing of this fantastic military friendly benefit.

Historical Fact- Hampton Street was originally part of the 1786 plan for Columbia and was called Plain Street.  It is believed the the street was originally named for the plain of Taylor’s Hill on which Columbia was built. In 1907 the street was renamed for Wade Hampton, III. Hampton was a graduate of South Carolina College and trained in the law. He fought in the War of 1812 and later as a Confederate General. General Sherman burned his house in Millwood to the ground. After the war he was elected as Governor and then later as a US Senator. Hampton County is named for him (before his death!) as is a town and high school in Greenville County. He died in 1902 and is buried in the churchyard of Trinity Cathedral in Columbia.

Don’t forget Blair Cato’s famous Cinco de Mayo Party will be held at 701 Whaley on May 5 at 5:30 pm. Tacos, beer, margaritas and door prizes. The Grand Prize is a weekend in Asheville!


Photo by The U.S. Army

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