Property Taxes And Home Ownership

Dated: 04/11/2019

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As a recent homeowner myself, I have learned a lot in a short amount of time about how property taxes work.  In the great state of Texas, we do not have a state income tax, yet we do have property taxes that tend to go up each year. However, there is a way to combat this issue.  For one, be sure that when you do buy, that you file for the homestead exemption once you've been in the home since January 1. This is a very simple process. Ignore all of the junk mail that comes to your new home that asks for money to file the exemption. It is completely free to do so,  and can be found here: https://www.traviscad.org/forms/forms-exemptions/ 


If you missed the deadline to apply for the homestead exemption, don't fret: 

LATE HOMESTEAD EXEMPTION

A property owner may file a late application for a homestead exemption after the deadline for filing has passed if it is filed not later than two years after the delinquency date for the taxes on the homestead.


Now, it's a double edged sword--we want our homes' values to increase, yet we don't want our taxes to go up. About 70% of Austinites hire a tax company to take care of fighting their property taxes, but it can be done solo, and that way you will keep all of the savings versus giving a cut to a tax company. Now, people say it is easier than in the past because of e-filing.  https://www.traviscad.org/eservices/ is the site where you can  protest your property taxes. There is also a link to do your homestead exemption so you don't have to rely on envelopes and stamps anymore.  


Good luck to everyone this tax season! 


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Liz Lurie

I grew up in Round Rock, and graduated from the University of Texas at Austin. I’ve lived all over our wonderful city, and I am a proud new home owner in the North Austin area. I am very passionate ....

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