If you are a homeowner in Texas, then you have likely heard of the Homestead Exemption and may even be applying it to save money on your property taxes.
The number of new residents moving to the Lone Star State, the favorable economic climate, and other factors are driving up the value of both residential and commercial properties across the state—which also means property taxes are rising.
While the market value for every property has no limit to how much it can increase, the Homestead Exemption limits the amount that taxes can increase on an individual’s primary residence each year. It is one of several tax exemptions in Texas that can help homeowners save money on their property tax bill.
Here are 5 things to know about the Homestead Exemption:
- To qualify for a Homestead Exemption, the home’s owner must be an individual (not a business entity) and use the home as their primary residence as of January 1st of the tax year.
- Homestead Exemptions may apply to taxes levied by the school district, county taxes, or other special taxing districts. Individuals ages 65 and older and disabled individuals may also qualify for additional exemptions.
- To apply for a Homestead Exemption, you must submit your application and documentation by April 30 of the tax year.
- If you purchase a home with an existing Homestead Exemption, the exemption will typically stay in place for the remainder of that tax year. However, the following tax year, you will need to apply again and qualify for the exemption.
- If you have a Homestead Exemption, then appealing your property tax rate every year can protect your property value for years to come. As the value of your home increases, there will be a limit to how much your taxes can increase.
In rapidly growing Texas cities such as Houston and Austin, filling for a Homestead Exemption can help homeowners reduce their taxable value by tens of thousands of dollars and save money on their annual property taxes.
To further reduce their taxes, homeowners can protest their property taxes every year, whether or not the appraised value changed. For more information about the property tax protest process, visit our FAQ page or reach out to one of our expert tax consultants in Austin or Houston.
Texas Protax is a property tax consulting firm serving Austin, Houston, and Central Texas. Contact us today to learn how we can help you appeal your property tax rate in Houston.