Small Commercial Tax Credit
Federal Tax Credits
The National Park Service has informed MHT that its Technical Preservation Services (TPS) staff, who review federal rehabilitation tax credit applications, have been placed on telework. MHT has been advised to hold all federal tax credit applications in our office and not forward them to NPS until further notice.
State Tax Credits
MHT staff continue to review all submissions for the Maryland Historic Revitalization Tax Credit Program as they are received. Program staff are currently on telework and are best reached by e-mail at the address noted at the bottom of this page.
Please note that due to ongoing staff vacancies and the challenges of remote working requirements, Tax Credit review periods are currently running between 60 and 85 days and are likely to increase.
PLEASE NOTE CHANGES IN THE FOLLOWING AREAS FOR ELIGIBILITY AND PROCESS IN THE SMALL COMMERCIAL PROGRAM
EFFECTIVE DECEMBER 16, 2019 - (1) INVESTMENT DEVELOPERS ELIGIBLE UNDER SMALL COMMERCIAL PROGRAM, (2) CHANGES TO THE SMALL COMMERCIAL PROGRAM REVIEW FEES, AND (3) CHANGES TO CERTIFICATION OF QUALIFIED REHABILITATION EXPENSES. PLEASE REVIEW THE APPLICATION INSTRUCTIONS AND FAQs FOR DETAILS
The Maryland Historical Trust will accept applications for Small Commercial projects on a first-come, first-served rolling basis until the program cap of $4 million has been reached. Eligible projects may earn a state income tax credit equal to 20 percent of qualified rehabilitation expenditures.
Small commercial rehabilitations are defined as projects that do not exceed $500,000 in total qualified rehabilitation expenses. The credit is capped at $50,000 in a 24-month period and must have a minimum of $5,000 of eligible expenses to qualify. Projects in a qualified Opportunity Zone may be eligible for additional tax credits.
The state small commercial tax credit may be used with federal and local historic tax credits. Federal applications are reviewed by MHT in coordination with the National Park Service and should be submitted simultaneously for a streamlined review. MHT review is independent of local review and may not be waived or substituted for local approval. Please contact your county or municipality for more information about local tax credits.
Please read the Small Commercial Application Instructions and all supporting materials prior to filling out the application. To download and fill out the actual forms, please read the instructions below.
Downloading fillable PDF application forms
These forms work best with Acrobat Reader 10 and above.
Open the forms in the Adobe Acrobat Reader (third-party PDF readers may not work).
- Part 1 certifies that a building is a certified historic structure
- Part 2 certifies that the proposed project meets the requirements of the program
- Part 3 certifies that the completed project meets the requirements of the program
Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until the program appropriation cap of $4 million is reached.
To be eligible for the tax credit, a building must be at least one of the following:
- Be primarily income-producing
- Be rehabilitated as part of a development project to be sold to a homeowner
- Meet the "Targeted Project" criteria as an agricultural building or post-WWII building
Be a certified historic structure, defined as having at least one of the following designations:
- Individually listed in the National Register of Historic Places
- A contributing resource within a National Register Historic District
- A locally designated structure or contributing resource within a local historic district that MHT determines to be eligible for the National Register
- Located within and certified as contributing to the significance of a certified heritage area
All aspects of the project and application must be reviewed and approved by MHT prior to commencing work and meet the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for Rehabilitation.
The tax credit may be used for projects that return a structure to a state of utility through repair or alteration, making possible an efficient use while preserving portions and features of the structure, site and environment that are historically, architecturally or culturally significant.
Examples of eligible projects include, but are not limited to:
- Roof repair and replacement
- Chimney repair and lining
- Window restoration
- New storm doors/windows
- Masonry repointing
- Floor refinishing
- Structural repairs
- Plumbing, electrical and mechanical systems
- Architectural/ Engineering/ Consulting fees
- Tool/equipment rental
- Repair of historic outbuildings
Examples of ineligible projects include, but are not limited to:
- Sidewalks, patios, driveways
- Non-historic outbuildings
- New construction
- Carpeting over historic flooring
- Curtains, blinds, rugs or other interior décor
- Tool/Equipment purchases
- Work that is primarily remodeling in nature
- Pest control, chimney cleaning, drain cleaning, etc.
If you have questions about the application process or eligible expenses, please contact tax credit staff.
- Megan Klem, Tax Credit Program, Preservation Officer, at 410-697-9560