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Tax Credits & Loans: Homeowner Tax Credit

before after
No. 58 Dexter Street in Providence's Armory District was completely transformed with help from a Historic Homeowner Tax Credit.

The Historic Homeowner Tax Credit helps owners of historic houses by making preservation work more affordable. If your exterior restoration project is approved, you can receive a substantial credit on your state income tax return.


To read and print the pdf-format application, you need Adobe Acrobat Reader. If you don't have this program, click the button below to get a free copy:

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How big is the credit?

The credit equals 20% of the cost of exterior restoration work. For every $2000 you spend, you get $400 back.

Can you get it all at once?

The maximum credit per year is $2000, and unused credits can be rolled over to future years, so long as you continue to live in the house and maintain its historic features.

Who qualifies?

Any applicant who owns and lives in the historic house can qualify.

Is my building historic?

Yes--if it is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, located within a National Register Historic District, or located in a local historic district. To confirm if your property is eligible, email Mercedes Monteiro or call her at (401)222-4133.

What kind of building qualifies?

Single-family, two-family, and three-family residences are eligible. If the property has more than three units, restrictions apply. Rental apartments, stores, offices, and other income-producing properties are not eligible for the State Historic Homeowner Tax Credit unless one unit is owner-occupied, but may be eligible for Federal Income Tax Credits and/or State Commercial Tax Credits.

What work qualifies?

Most exterior repairs to the building will qualify for the tax credit as long as the work meets the The Secretary of the Interior's Standards for Rehabilitating Historic Properties. Eligible projects include work on the roof, foundation, structure, exterior walls, porches, trim, windows, doors, and painting.

What work doesn't qualify?

A tax credit will not be given for interior work, new construction, landscaping, outbuildings, or replacement windows.

NEW! What is the RIHPHC's policy on window work?

Because historic windows are an important character-defining feature of historic houses, preserving and maintaining historic window sash is always the RIHPHC’s goal. In many cases, historic windows can be successfully preserved through repair and maintenance. When this is not possible, the replacement should match the historic window as closely as possible. For more information, click here for a pdf-format document on RIHPHC's window policy.

How do I apply?

To receive a tax credit application, call the Commission at 222-2678, or click the link near the top of this page.

How long does it take?

Submit a completed application at any time of year. If the project is approved, the Commission will issue a certificate for you to include with your state tax return. Reviews take approximately four weeks.

Can I get restoration advice?

If you have questions about the work or the standards, you may email Preservation Architect Roberta Randall or call her at 222-4333.

What's the fine print?

Click Historic Homeowner Tax Credit Regulations to download a copy. To read and print the pdf-format regulations, you need Adobe Acrobat. If you don't have Acrobat, click the button near the top of this page.