Filing Your Homestead Exemption
Published | Written by Racheal (Rach) Potter
One of the major benefits to owning a home is being able to take advantage of the tax exemptions associated with homeownership. An “exemption” is a form of tax relief designed to reduce the taxable value of your property, which in turn reduces the amount of tax you pay on your home. You may qualify for several fairly straightforward exemptions, including if you are over the age of 65, are a disabled individual or veteran, or use your land for agricultural purposes. Another common tax break is called the Homestead Exemption, and the rules of how to access this benefit vary by state. Today, we’ll discuss how to successfully claim it for your Texas home.
The Homestead Exemption requires an appraisal by representatives of the jurisdictions which will be assessing the tax on your home, and you have to submit an application to the Central Appraisal District (CAD) by April 30 in order to qualify. You must be occupying the property as your main homestead as of January 1 of the tax year in which the exemption is granted, and you must submit your Texas driver’s license or state ID along with your application. Be sure that the address on your card matches the address of your property, otherwise the Chief Appraiser will be prohibited from approving your exemption.
As the homeowner, it is your responsibility to apply for any and all tax exemptions, so it is also important to be on the lookout for imposters and scammers claiming to file on your behalf. You can file easily - and for free - on your county’s CAD website. The county CAD will send you correspondence regarding your exemptions, and you must respond to respond to those communications in a timely manner. Once the process is completed, tax statements will be mailed out in October, and will hopefully include your approved Homestead Exemption!
As a new purchaser, you need to notify the taxing authorities of your ownership so that the tax rolls will reflect the change. You may do this by contacting the appropriate tax appraisal district in your county from the following list:
Collin County Appraisal www.collincad.org
Dallas County Appraisal www.dallascad.org
Denton County Appraisal www.dentoncad.com
Johnson County Appraisal www.johnsoncad.com
Rockwall County Appraisal www.rockwallcad.com
Tarrant County Appraisal www.tad.org