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Register a Building Exempt

If you've received a notice from the Vacant Building Administration concerning a vacant or blighted designation, use the following to determine whether your building qualifies for a vacant property exemption.

To be exempt, property owners and their properties must meet ONE of the following criteria:

  • The building is under active construction or undergoing active rehabilitation, renovation, or repair.
  • You have been actively seeking to rent or sell the building for less than 1 year for residential properties, or less than 2 years for commercial properties.
  • The building is subject of a probate proceeding or the title is the subject of litigation.
  • A property is the subject of a pending application for development that requires approval of the Board of Zoning Adjustment, Zoning Commission, Commission on Fine Arts, Historic Preservation Review Board, Mayor’s Agent for Historic Preservation, or National Capital Planning Commission.
  • The owner of the property is requesting economic hardship due to extraordinary circumstances.

To apply for an exemption online:

  • Register your building as exempt by completing the Vacant Property Response Form.
  • Check the box next to the exemption you are claiming in Step 2.
  • Provide the required supporting documents listed next to the checked exemption.

It is very important that you include all the required documents with your response form.

If approved, your property’s tax rate will not be changed for the applicable fiscal year ONLY, and you will receive a confirmation letter from the Vacant Building Administration.

If denied, your property will be taxed at the Class 3 rate and you will receive a denial notice with appeal instructions from the Vacant Building Administration.

Blight Property
DCRA determines that a building is blighted if it is unsafe, unsanitary, or otherwise determined to threaten the health, safety, or general welfare of the community. Learn more on Register a Blight Property.

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