Frequently Asked Questions

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When are taxes due?
The City of Newton is on a quarterly tax system and taxes are due 4 times per year. Tax due dates are August, November, February and May 1st. If the first falls on a weekend or holiday, taxes are due the following business day.


What is the tax rate?
The Assessing department sets the tax rate in December. Fiscal Year 2010: Residential tax rate $10.41 per thousand of assessed value, Commercial Tax rate: $19.93 per thousand of assessed value.


What is the period covered in the Fiscal Year?
Fiscal Year 2012 (FY12) begins July 1, 2011 and ends June 30th, 2012.


What are the monthly periods covered by the tax bill?
The bill due August 1st covers July 1st through September 30th. (Preliminary Tax bill)
The bill due November 1st covers October 1st through December 31st. (Preliminary Tax bill)
The bill due February 1st covers January 1st through March 31st. (Real Estate Tax bill)
The bill due May 1st covers April 1st through June 30th. (Real Estate Tax bill)


What is Preliminary tax?
Preliminary tax bills are estimated bills. The estimate is based on the actual net tax bill of the previous fiscal year. The preliminary tax is due in two installments (August and November). Formula: Actual for previous FY x 2.5% = X. (Actual + X) divided by 4.


What is Real Estate Tax?
Real estate tax is the actual tax for the Fiscal Year. In December, the Assessing Department assesses the tax for the year and the amounts paid on the Preliminary bills are subtracted from the tax. The RE tax is due in two installments (February and May).


Do you accept postmarks for payment date receipt?
No. Bills are considered paid when received by the Treasurer. Postmark dates on envelopes are not accepted as the date of payment. All payments are to be received by the Treasury office by the due date. Payments are processed the day they are received. Late payments will incur interest/penalties.


What are the interest rates for past due bills?
Real Estate and Personal Property outstanding balances are subject to 14% interest and Water 6% according to Massachusetts General Law Chapter 59, sections 57 and 57C. The Tax Title interest rate is 16% under Massachusetts General Law Chapter 60, section 62. Excise interest rate is 12% under MGL 60A, section 2.


When are Tax bills and Water bills mailed?
Tax bills and water bills are mailed one month before the due date. Real estate, personal property and water bills are mailed quarterly (4 bills per year). Contact the Water department with billing frequency and related questions. Excise is billed once a year, the majority of which are mailed in February. See Excise FAQs for more information.


How do I change or update my billing address?
The Assessing Department maintains the tax bill mailing address database. The Water department maintains the water bill mailing address database. Contact each respective department for their requirements. Treasury does not maintain mailing address databases. Do not send address changes with your payment.


Is there a duplicate bill fee?
Yes, $1.00/bill. Pay duplicate bill fee(s) with a separate check.


Where is your office located?
The Treasurer & Collector’s office is located in Newton City Hall, 1000 Commonwealth Ave., (First floor (@ Commonwealth Ave. side of building), 02459. Newton City Hall is located across from the Newton Free Public Library, and is flanked by Walnut St., Homer St., and Commonwealth Ave.


Do you have visitor parking?
Yes, parking is available in the parking concourse in front of City Hall, and at Newton Free Public Library @ Homer Street.


Where should I mail correspondence?
All correspondence should be mailed to:
City of Newton
Treasurer/Collector’s Office
1000 Commonwealth Avenue (1st Fl.)
Newton, MA 02459

Do not include address changes with Treasury correspondence. Mail address changes to the Assessing department and/or Water department. Contact each department for their specific requirements.


What if my check is returned?
If your check bounces, you will be responsible for a $25.00 fee in addition to the amount of the check that is returned, plus any accrued interest/fees.


How do I obtain a refund of a credit on my tax account?
Please see the Refund Policy available on our Treasury web-site page entitled ”Refund Requests for credit Balances.” The policy explains what is needed to receive a real estate tax refund.