Historic Tax Credit

Enhance the Historic Tax Credit

Take action to help support enhancements to the Federal Historic Credit.


Preserve More. Preserve Better.

In mid-September, House committees approved a $3.5 trillion package of bills to support rebuilding our communities and preserving our nation’s most important historic buildings. Championed by Senators Cardin (D-MD) and Cassidy (R-LA), the bills include enhancements to the Historic Tax Credit (HTC), the most successful federal program that supports the historic preservation movement.​ The latest iteration of the reconciliation infrastructure bill  excludes the Historic Tax Credit (HTC) enhancements.

For more than three decades the federal historic tax credit has supported the preservation of our most important historic buildings, supported community redevelopment, promoted job creation, and offered climate change solutions through building reuse. Enhancing the historic tax credit, as envisioned by the Historic Tax Credit Growth and Opportunity Act (H.R. 2294), will build on this success well into the future. Please use this submission form to add your name, your organization’s name, or your businesses name to the draft letter addressed to key leaders in the House and Senate.

Take action today to help us preserve more and preserve better!


Watch & Share

Call Your Senators

We need you to call your Senators to support the Historic Tax Credit enhancement provisions included in the infrastructure legislation. Click here to search for your Representative’s contact information. Introduce yourself as a constituent and explain:

"The Historic Tax Credit is the single most important tool for historic preservation. Unfortunately, it has not been improved since the 1980’s. Please support and protect the Historic Tax Credit provisions in the House Reconciliation Infrastructure Bill. The current draft would benefit ALL HTC-eligible projects from Main Street to large-scale rehabilitation efforts across the country. Help us preserve more and preserve better!"

Next, use this email tool to advocate for the enhancement ask your friends, neighbors, and associates to do the same.

    Talking Points

    Download some key talking points you can use when advocating for HTC enhancements.



    Hear from the NTCIC and NTHP public policy teams to explore the current status of the reconciliation package.



    Listen to a recent PreserveCast episode with Merrill Hoopengardner, President of NTCIC.



    • How you can help: Kelly Humrichouser, Director of Government Relations, provides guidance on how to take action in her recent blog post, Main Street Advocacy Alert: Opportunity to Improve the Historic Tax Credit.
    • Making the case for your state: NTHP has compiled HTC maps for each state showing where projects have been executed over the past 20 years. Additionally, the National Park Service produces an annual report on the HTC. Check out the fiscal ’20 report here.
    • Next opportunities to learn and reach out:  This year’s PastForward virtual conference, Nov 2-5, will feature a concurrent virtual lobby day – an opportunity for advocates from across the preservation and Main Street realms to meet with Congressional offices. When registering for the conference, be sure to indicate your interest in joining these meetings, and someone from your state will reach out with more information. In advance of the conference, all are invited to join a webinar on 10/21 at 3pm ET to learn more about the PastForward Advocacy Agenda. Register here.

      Great Impact

      We are poised to make the biggest change that would enhance and expand the credit in a generation.

      - Merrill Hoopengardner
      President, National Trust Community Investment Corporation


      About the Provisions

      Increase the credit from 20-30% for all projects for at least 5 years

      All projects (placed in service after April 1, 2021) would receive a temporary increase to the credit to 30% through 2025. The credit would phase down to 26% in 2026, 23% in 2027, and return to 20% in 2028. This will help address unforeseen financing gaps and contribute to the economic recovery by invigorating many new historic rehabilitation projects, both big and small.

      Elimination of the basis adjustment

      All projects would benefit from eliminating the requirement to subtract the amount of the HTC from a building’s basis for depreciation purposes. This provision would bring more value to the HTC and would make it easier to pair with other community development incentives like affordable housing and opportunity zone investments.

      Sustain the 30% credit amount for small projects

      This provision would permanently extend the increase from 20% to 30% beyond 2025 for small projects (less than $2.5 million) to ensure smaller investments such as those common in rural and non-urban areas have a better ability to take advantage of the credit.

      Modification of substantial rehabilitation definition

      This provision lowers the substantial rehabilitation threshold for all projects from 100% to 50% of a building’s basis. Reducing this eligibility threshold will make more buildings eligible for rehabilitation before they have deteriorated too significantly. This change will also allow historic building owners to more easily adapt projects to new uses in a changing economic landscape.

      Modifications of tax-exempt use leasing rules

      This change would allow nonprofits and other tax-exempt entities to more easily rehabilitate their own historic properties. These changes would make more projects led by health care centers, arts organizations, community services, affordable housing organizations, and workforce training providers possible.

      Enabling HTC to be used for public school buildings 

      This provision would eliminate certain “prior use” limitations for government entities to rehabilitate historic public school buildings.