Lowest Property Taxes in Texas- Property taxes are a major source of income for local and state governments. They are assessed, collected, and used locally—in Texas, property taxes keep local governments operating by providing a considerable revenue stream. Texas law has established the process followed by local officials for determining property values; moreover, it ensures that values are equal and uniform, sets tax rates, and dictates the tax collection process. The county appraisal district is responsible for determining the value of your property every year. As a property owner and taxpayer, you remit payment of your property taxes to the local county tax assessor-collector’s office for distribution and use by the local taxing units. The taxing units are responsible for budgeting and deciding how much of the revenue should be allocated for various public services—they invest those funds into things like schools, roads, hospitals, police departments, fire departments, and other services.

Texas does not levy property taxes at the state level. The Texas State Constitution and state laws authorize local Texas governments to collect property taxes. Title 1 of the Texas state property tax code states the rules that apply, to protect the rights of all property owners in the state. It provides five central rules, the first of which establishes that all taxation must be equal; this is possible via uniform appraisal. The second rule addresses the taxation of property based on the current market value in Texas. (Note: there are some exceptions under the Texas state tax code.) The third main rule states that there can be only one single appraised value assessed for each property in a county—different entities cannot appraise on property differently. The fourth rule says that all property is taxable (unless it qualifies for an exemption under federal or state law). The fifth rule advises that all Texas property owners have a right to reasonable notice of any increase in the appraised value of their property.

The amount owed in property taxes each year depends on the value of your property. You are required to pay your Texas property taxes annually, on the closing date of the tax year.  (Payment is due no later than January 31st.) failure to pay your property taxes on time will result in financial penalties that will increase what you owe over time; these penalties begin accruing on February 1st (or the first business day of the month) and are added to your tax bill. (Note: you may qualify under the tax code to receive a property tax exemption in the form of a deferral, a discount, a payment installment plan, or a split/partial payment. Your local tax collection office can provide more information regarding the property tax payment options that might be available to you in your county.)

If you need help navigating the real estate market, consulting a professional real estate agent is your best bet. To learn more about buying a new property, including the role of property taxes, WEICHERT, REALTORS® – The Harrell Group is the professional real estate team to help you. This company employs experienced, committed real estate experts who offer outstanding service to each of their clients. Contact WEICHERT, REALTORS® – The Harrell Group any time, so the skilled real estate team can assist you in finding your new property and help you understand your new role as a property owner.

Written by: Erika Mehlhaff