The Williamson Central Appraisal District presents Residential Homestead Exemption: General information. This presentation is provided to explain: The term Homestead as it relates to the Texas Property Tax Code, the residential homestead exemption and benefits it provides, requirements for eligibility, important filing dates and deadlines, where applications may be obtained, and where the application must be filed.
A homestead is defined as the one primary residence of a person. A property owner may not claim another homestead exemption inside or outside the state of Texas. The homeowner must file application for homestead exemption with the appraisal district in the county for which they reside and will not receive the benefits of property tax savings until the application has been filed. The exemption will be removed if the homeowner leaves the homesteaded property and establishes residency elsewhere.
The Texas Property Tax Code provides an exemption for owner-occupied property. The exemption removes a portion of value from taxation, which gives an eligible property owner a lower tax amount for a homestead property. A homestead exemption also restricts the amount that the assessed value of a residential property may increase from one year to the next. And finally, there are no charges associated with filing a homestead or any other exemption. Property Owners eligible for the homestead exemption must have owned and occupied the residence as of January 1st of the current tax year. Also, the property must be a primary residence, and owners are eligible for only one homestead exemption if they own more than one property. Applicants must attach a copy of their driver license or state-issued personal identification certificate. The address listed on your driver license or state-issued personal identification certificate must correspond to the address of the property for which an exemption is claimed in this application. In certain cases, you may be exempt from these requirements or the chief appraiser may waive the requirements. A homestead may include up to 20 acres of land that are part of the residential use or occupancy of a home.
The residential homestead exemption filing deadline is April 30th each year. The Property Tax Code allows for late filed applications, however, they may be filed no later than one year after the tax delinquency date. Once the exemption is approved, reapplication is not required unless requested by the appraisal district. However, notification must be provided to the appraisal district if and when a right to any exemption ends or qualifications change. An over 65 exemption application is required when an owner becomes eligible, unless the appraisal district has the property owner’s date of birth indicating over-65 exemption eligibility. In this instance, the appraisal district will apply the over-65 exemption without application. However, the disability exemption requires application when the property owner becomes eligible.
The appraisal district website www.wcad.org has applications that may be printed from the link titled: Forms. Property owners may contact our office at 512.930.3787 and request an exemption application be mailed. Or, visitors to the appraisal district office may request an application from a Public Services representative.
Additionally, for eligible property owners, online filing may be done. Online filing for eligible property owners is located under the property search tab on the WCAD homepage. Select the property search tab and enter your corresponding information in the appropriate field. Select your property in the results field and select the File HS Exemption icon to begin filling out the application. For an in depth explanation of online filing, please see the video title Online Homestead Filing.
Appraisal district public services representatives are available to assist property owners with questions about any exemption allowed by the Texas Property Tax Code and the associated application requirements. Appraisal district visitors should take a number, and the first available representative will assist them. The public services representative will provide a property owner with a homestead exemption application upon request, and present additional information or assistance on how to appropriately fill one out. The completed application may then be left with the representative for processing. There are multiple ways to file your homestead exemption application. Homesteads filed online will be submitted electronically. All other completed homestead exemption applications may be emailed to email@example.com, mailed to the Williamson Central Appraisal District or hand delivered to the office as stated earlier.
Anyone visiting the appraisal district is also invited to complete a short public service survey to indicate the quality of service provided. Surveys may be completed electronically in the lobby and on the WCAD website as well. Additionally, paper copies of the survey may be obtained from any public service representative, or the kiosk located in the lobby. The printed surveys have prepaid postage and may be mailed, or placed in the survey box located in the lobby. We appreciate your interest in the general information regarding the residential homestead exemption.
If you have any questions, please contact us at 512.930.3787.