Urban Revitalization Tax Abatement Program

Mason City Urban Revitalization Tax Abatement Program 

Most homeowners and business property owners who wish to upgrade their properties can take advantage of Mason City’s Urban Revitalization Tax Abatement program. Owners of a single family or two-family home can receive a five year, 100-percent abatement on the increased taxes resulting from improvements that increase the assessed value of the property by 10 percent or more. For new construction or for improvements to newer homes, the abatement is limited to the first $75,000 of increased value. For improvements to homes that are historic (any home that is 50 or more years old) or  to homes that the City determines are blighted, there is no limitation on the tax abatement, so long as the improvements raise the value of the property by at least 10 percent. This program applies to improvements to the main dwelling structure as well as to detached outbuildings, such as garages. To be eligible, the property must be located in the designated Urban Revitalization District (most homes in Mason City are within the district; contact the Development Services Department at 421-3626 or see the Mason City Urban Revitalization Area map if you are not sure if your property is included.

Owners of multi-residential dwellings (three or more dwelling units in a building) can also take advantage of this program. Assisted living projects (senior care, independent living, nursing homes, group homes, etc.) are eligible if improvements raise the assessed value at least 10 percent. Traditional multi-family developments (apartments, rooming houses, etc.) are eligible if improvements raise the value at least 15 percent. Qualified projects can choose one of two tax abatement schedules: a three-year, 100-percent abatement on the increased taxes resulting from the improvements, or a ten-year, declining scale abatement (80 percent of the increased taxes in year one, 70 percent in year two, and so on).

In 2019, the City adopted a new incentive to build new multi-residential developments in Downtown Mason City. New multi-residential projects in the Downtown Reinvestment Urban Renewal Area can request a 100% tax abatement for up to ten years. See the Urban Revitalization Areas map for the boundaries of the Downtown Reinvestment area.

Business owners may also be able to benefit from this program. Projects that increase the value of the property by at least 15 percent can also choose one of the two tax abatement schedules available to owners of multiple-family property, as described above. This program applies only to business properties in the Urban Revitalization District, which includes Downtown Mason City, most of the North and South Federal Avenue corridors, parts of 19th Street SW and South Taft Avenue, the Willowbrook area, parts of the business district on West IA 122/4th Street SW, and the small business areas on East IA 122/4th Street SE and on the north side of 12th Street NE at North Carolina Avenue. Again, contact the Development Services Department at 421-3626 or see the Mason City Urban Revitalization Areas map to determine if your property is included in the Urban Revitalization District.

If you complete improvements during this calendar year and would like to be considered for the Urban Revitalization Tax Abatement program, please request the program application from the Development Services Department, third floor of City Hall, or download the form below. The completed form must be submitted by 4:30 PM on January 31 of the next calendar year (if the 31st falls on a Saturday or Sunday, the deadline is 4:30PM on the following Monday). The City Assessor will notify you if your project qualifies for the tax abatement.

Urban Revitalization Application Form

Urban Revitalization District Map

Information Brochure

Questions? Please contact the Development Services Department at 421-3626.