Owning a home comes with its fair share of responsibilities, and property taxes are undoubtedly one of them. However, if you're a homeowner in Johnson County, there's a chance you've been benefiting from a homestead exemption, providing you with some relief on your property taxes. In 2023, the Texas legislature raised the homestead exemption amount on school taxes from $40,000 to $100,000, offering much-needed relief from rising tax bills. Prior to this, appraisal districts had no requirement to audit the exemptions currently on their rolls. Starting in 2024, all appraisal districts have a directive to reevaluate all in-place exemptions. For most districts, this will consist of a review every 5 years, and some homeowners might be asked to reapply for their exemption. In this blog, we'll delve into the details of this recent change and guide you on what steps to take.
Understanding the Homestead Exemption
A homestead exemption is a valuable benefit that reduces the taxable value of your home, thus lowering your tax bill. This exemption is authorized by the State of Texas or adopted by local taxing units. In Johnson County, as in many other areas, the homestead exemption serves as a crucial relief for homeowners. Prior to 2023, all homeowners in Johnson County received a $40,000 reduction from their taxable value for all school district taxes. In 2023, that amount was raised to $100,000.
One significant aspect of the homestead exemption in Texas is the "homestead cap." This cap limits the annual increase of your property's appraised value to 10%. This means that, under normal circumstances, your property taxes won't skyrocket unexpectedly. However, it's essential to note that the homestead cap may exceed the 10% increase if you make additional improvements, add land, or undergo extensive renovations on your residence homestead.
To qualify for a homestead exemption, eligible individuals must submit an application. This is typically a one-time process, but the recent change in Texas law may require property owners to reapply every five years. The chief appraiser will notify those scheduled for reverification and provide detailed instructions on completing the process. It's crucial to pay attention to these notifications to ensure you don't miss the reapplication deadline. Usually, the application will arrive via mail to the homesteaded address. The application will require you to provide a copy of your driver’s license or identification card to verify the address is your primary homestead.
How Do I Know if I Have an Exemption?
In Johnson County, visit the county appraisal district’s website at http://www.johnsoncad.com. There will be a section titled “Exemptions.” Click here, and the Homestead Exemption should be listed.
No Fee for Filing
The good news is that applying for a homestead exemption in Texas is generally free of charge. There's no need to worry about additional fees when seeking this valuable property tax relief.
As a Texas homeowner, staying informed about changes in property tax laws is essential to ensure you continue to benefit from valuable exemptions like the homestead exemption. With the recent law mandating reapplication every five years, be on the lookout for notifications from your local appraisal district. Take proactive steps to verify your eligibility and continue enjoying the benefits of the homestead exemption. After all, a little awareness can go a long way in keeping your property taxes in check. As always, we're here with you every step of the way. Feel free to reach out to your LEAGUE agent; they’ll be happy to help with any questions! #ReadyToServe