SDAT Announces Improvements to Ground Rent System

The Maryland State Department of Assessments and Taxation (SDAT) today announced a more simplified ground rent redemption system for Maryland homeowners subject to ground rent. The new process aims to reduce the obstacles a homeowner must overcome, and the number of documents a homeowner must procure to redeem their ground rent through SDAT.

While Baltimore City homeowners will be the most affected by the new ground rent redemption process, Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Carroll, Harford, Howard, Montgomery, Prince George’s, and Worcester Counties also have registered ground rents in their jurisdictions.

According to an SDAT press release:

“Thanks to Governor Hogan’s leadership, SDAT has been able to streamline the process to eliminate residential ground rents here in Maryland,” said SDAT Director Michael Higgs. “This new process will greatly benefit Maryland homeowners who wish to once and for all resolve uncertainty about the status of the ground rent attached to their home’s deed.”

Every homeowner that has ground rent is able to redeem their ground rent through SDAT, regardless of whether the homeowner knows who they should be paying their ground rent to. More information can be found on SDAT’s Ground Rent Website.

The Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) operates the Maryland Homeowner Assistance Fund, which can help with past-due mortgage payments and other housing costs, including delinquent ground rent, for homeowners who have experienced financial hardship after January 21, 2020. For more information, visit homeownerassistance.maryland.gov.

DHCD also offers an interest-free Ground Rent loan program for homeowners who want to buy out (redeem) ground leases but cannot afford to make a lump sum payment and are not currently delinquent on ground rent payments.

Visit the SDAT website for more information.

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