Filing your homestead exemption
What are Exemptions?
Exemptions are a form of tax relief that can reduce the taxable value of your property and therefore reduce the amount you owe!
There are several types of exemptions including: "Over 65", "Disabled Veteran", "Disabled Individual", "Agricultural", "Homestead", etc.
Who qualifies for the HOMESTEAD EXEMPTION? See update
To qualify you must be occupying your home as your primary residence or "homestead" on January 1st of the tax year in which it is granted. You must file your application no later than April 30th to be eligible. It is your responsibility as the homeowner to apply for any exemptions. It is FREE to do so and typically the information can be found on your county's appraisal district website (CAD). If the CAD sends you correspondence regarding your exemptions be sure to respond timely but do not be tricked by impostors asking you to send money.
Homestead can now be filed throughout the year
----->>> 2022 UPDATE <<<-----
Great News! - A new law effective Jan. 1, 2022 (SB 8, Texas Tax Code sections 11.42(f), 11.43(d), 23.23(c-1) provides property tax relief by allowing homebuyers to file for their homestead exemption in the year that they purchased their new home. This new law will allow homebuyers to immediately apply for their homestead exemption and receive tax benefits right away. To get your homestead filed right away here is what you need to do:
1. Verify that the property's ownership change is reflected on the tax rolls by contacting the county appraisal district office or using the County Appraisal District (CAD) property-search feature available at the CAD website (see below for most area appraisal district sites)
2. Download the application for Residential Homestead Exemption form from your county CAD website. Complete it, then follow the instructions specific to your county. Contact your appraisal district if you are not able to find the information online.
As a new property owner, you are required to pay property taxes on this real estate. It is taxed each year by a variety of jurisdictions including the county, city and school district. You, as the new owner, need to notify the taxing authorities of your ownership so that the tax rolls will reflect the change (if the change has not been noted). You may do this by contacting the appropriate tax appraisal district in your county from the following list:
How do I apply for the HOMESTEAD EXEMPTION?
In most cases you will just click on the link to the county that your property resides and you should find a link that says "Exemptions" or "Forms". From there chose the Residential Homestead Exemption Application to either apply online or bring up the PDF that you will fill out to apply. In most cases there will be instructions and information about the Homestead and other exemptions but if you have any questions just give us a call. Each counties website is slightly different but the overall process should be very similar.
Instructions for applying:
In order to qualify for a residential homestead exemption you must provide the following to the Central Appraisal District when submitting your application:
1. A copy of the applicant’s Texas driver’s license or Texas identification card (Drivers license address must match your homestead property)
NOTE: The property address on the exemption application must match the address listed on the applicant’s Texas driver’s license/Texas Identification certificate; otherwise the Chief Appraiser is prohibited from approving the exemption.
On January 1, ownership, legal description of the property and exemption status of the taxpayer are determined. Several forms of tax relief are available which may reduce the taxable value of your property. Applying for exemptions is the taxpayer’s responsibility. Contact your appraisal district to learn more about the following exemptions and how to file for them:
General Homestead Exemption
Over 65 Exemption
Disabled Individual Exemption
Disabled Veteran Exemption
*Agriculture Land Exemption
To receive your exemption(s), you must own and occupy the property as of January 1st. Your application must be applied for on or before April 30th to receive the tax benefits for this year. This service is FREE.
Remember, tax bills are generally mailed in October of each year. The taxes are considered due and payable once the tax bills have been released, however, you may elect to pay them as late as January 31 without penalty. Taxes become delinquent February 1 and on this date penalties and interest do accrue. If you receive a Tax Statement and your mortgage company is escrowing funds for taxes from your monthly payments, this form should be provided for your records and your mortgage servicer should be dispersing the tax payment on your behalf.
If the Central Appraisal District sends correspondence regarding your exemptions or ownership, make sure to respond.