By Pat Loeb

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Philadelphia officials are recommending that homeowners look into pre-paying their 2018 real estate taxes so they get the benefit of a full deduction, before newly-passed changes to the tax code take effect.

However, most suburban homeowners won’t have that option.

The new code limits the deduction for local taxes so paying before the end of the year would allow homeowners to deduct the full amount from their 2017 taxes, but Montgomery County told all its municipalities they cannot accept 2018 real estate taxes.

Townships in Bucks, Delaware and Chester Counties also say they don’t have the legal authority to accept pre-payment of taxes.

“For people in this area, they’re going to be a little bit more hurt by that because of the high home values and high taxes,” said Anna Sachs, an accountant in Lower Merion.

Lower Merion will be hit hard by the new rules. Sachs says, though, there are steps residents can take to offset some of the lost deductions.

“Pay your fourth quarter state estimate before Dec. 31, try to do as much charity before Dec. 31 and try at least to get your January mortgage payment in if you possibly can,” said Sachs.

The new rules also limit deductions for mortgage interest.

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