A recent Texas State Comptroller’s Office press release announced the following updates to Texas property tax exemptions and programs:

Appraisals for Productivity

Property owners who use their land for timber, farming, or wildlife management can receive property tax relief, which could result in a lower appraisal of the land-based on its production, rather than its market value.

Homestead Exemptions

These exemptions reduce the appraised value of the taxpayer’s home and land used as the owner’s main residence on January 1 of the tax year.

Partial Exemptions for Disabled Veterans

Texas law provides partial exemptions for disabled veterans or surviving spouses and surviving children of deceased disabled veterans. The amount exempted is, among other things, keyed to the percentage of the veteran’s disability.

Miscellaneous Exemptions for Non-Profit Organizations

Qualifying non-profit organizations may qualify and must apply to their local appraisal district. Additionally, some businesses may qualify for property tax abatements by meeting a variety of public-interest requirements and energy-storage-related purposes.

Tax Deferral for Residence Homestead

Taxpayers can postpone paying delinquent property taxes owed on the appreciating value of their homes. This deferral postpones the remaining taxes, but with interest accruing at 8% per year. However, this deferral does not cancel the tax obligation.

Tax Deferral for Seniors aged 65 or Older or Disabled, or Disabled Veteran Homeowners

Seniors (65+ or disabled) and disabled veterans can postpone paying current and delinquent property taxes on their homes. The deferment remains in effect as long as the owner continues to own and live in the home.

Rendering (i.e., reporting) Taxable Property

Renditions are required if the property produces income. This includes personal property and equipment used by the business, however, church property or farming equipment is not taxed.

Appraisal Notices

Notices of Appraised Value are mailed in the spring. These documents contain estimates of the current year’s property tax value. It’s imperative that the Notice is carefully reviewed because any dispute on those estimated values must be filed by the deadline listed on the document. City, county, school districts, and other local taxing units must use the appraisal district’s property tax value to set the upcoming year’s tax rates.

A Taxpayer Can Protest a Property Appraisal

Any disagreement a property owner has with the estimated appraised value must be resolved by, first, protesting the assessed value to the appraisal district’s ARB. Some counties offer electronic portals for submitting formal protests, while other counties require all appeals to be submitted by mail. Property owners may also request an informal meeting with appraisal district staff to resolve the dispute before attending ARB Hearings.

Communications Via Electronic Methods

Appraisal districts in counties with a population of 200,000 or more, or where authorized electronic communications facilities are available, can use email or other computerized media to communicate with property owners. These communications must be preceded by written agreements so that notices and other documents can be delivered electronically, rather than on paper.

Contact Information

Questions about your country’s property appraisal rates or property tax should be addressed to the county’s appraisal district or tax assessor-collector. Visit the Comptroller.Texas.gov website for a directory of appraisal districts and tax offices.