State Historic Tax Credits

Historic Tax Credits Map 2016

Research has found that an effective state program leverages the use of the federal historic tax credit. For example, Missouri's state tax credit doubled the usage of the federal incentive when it was put into place. To further support the federal historic tax credit, it is essential to also advocate to protect, expand, and gain tax incentives at the state level.

To spur more private investment in older neighborhoods, 33 states have adopted laws creating credits against state taxes to provide incentives for the appropriate rehabilitation of historic buildings. (See map above.) Well-crafted state historic tax credit programs, such as those in Minnesota, North Carolina, and Virginia, increase the number of federal rehabilitation projects.

State Advocacy Campaigns

Advocacy Tools

State Tax Credits for Historic Preservation: A Public Policy Report. This policy tool was produced by the National Trust for Historic Preservation and written by Harry K. Schwartz. You can use it in two ways: hand it out to your legislators, and use it to compare your state program to others.

State Historic Tax Credits Increase Use of the Federal Historic Tax Credits

  • The presence of an active state tax credit program boosts the use of the federal credit on average between $15 and $35 million in certified expenditures according to research from the Washington Office of Planning. That means the states with active tax credit programs are bringing in between $3 to $7 million federal dollars, which would not otherwise be available, to the state.

Improve Kentucky’s Historic Tax Credit

To encourage more revitalization and generate more revenue for the state, please support Kentucky House Bill 424.


Ohio law requires the state to conduct a cost-benefit analysis for each historic building seeking a tax credit. The state must determine whether rehabilitation of the building and awarding of the credit will result in a net revenue gain in state and local taxes once the building is used. The Ohio model takes into account tax revenues generated after the building is placed in service. Click here to learn about Ohio's program.

The reports below quantify the numbers of direct jobs and other substantial economic impacts created through state tax incentives. They also show how the rehabilitation of historic buildings starts to pay back the state’s investment immediately through taxes on construction jobs and materials.