Texas Property Tax Law Updates
Exciting Developments in Texas Property Tax Law for Homeowners in 2024!
Recent legislative shifts in the Texas property tax landscape mean bigger benefits for property owners this year! Here's a brief overview of the law updates from the 88th Texas Legislature that could potentially reduce your property tax bill for 2023 and beyond:
Expanded Homestead Exemption
Thanks to Senate Bill 2 (SB2), the standard $40,000 homestead exemption has jumped to an impressive $100,000. This translates to an average savings of $681 in school taxes, according to the Senate Research Center. These new benefits automatically extend to homeowners aged 65 or older and those with disabilities. In the past, they have had to wait for separate amendments to see their benefits. Additionally, local taxing units are barred from altering optional homestead exemptions (from 2022) until after the 2027 tax year.
Reduced School Tax Rates
SB2 also introduces a reduction in the maximum school district maintenance and operation (M&O) rates of $0.107 for the 2023-2024 school year. This means you'll pay 10.7 cents less in school taxes for every $100 of your property's value in that tax year.
New Appraisal Caps
The updates from SB2 include an appraisal cap pilot program benefiting non-homestead real property valued at $5 million or less. The program ensures that taxable value increases for these properties are capped at 20% annually until 2026. This should usher in more stability in property assessments.
Other Key Changes to Texas Property Tax Law
The 88th Texas Legislature also introduced other bills to benefit property owners, including HB1228, SB2355, and HB796. These bills expand online access to appraisal info, binding arbitration filing, and protest hearing databases. Appraisal review boards have more accountability with three additional elected members in counties over 75,000 (SB2) and a "clear and convincing evidence" burden of proof in certain Chapter 42 appeals (HB2488).
Homeowners may also use binding arbitration to ensure a fairer protest process by forcing boards to follow their own rules (HB4101). Additionally, HB1285 expands taxpayer liaison officers' roles to handle more property owner complaints, and HB2121 eliminates notarization for BPP renditions valued at $150,000 or less, starting January 1, 2024.
My Taxes Are Still High - What Can I Do?
Property taxes are the largest expense for most property owners. It is likely property taxes will continue to increase for years to come, even with the recent law changes. While the recent law changes will help, it is still best to protest your property value to keep your taxable value in check.
We partnered with a local property tax protest firm, Gill, Denson & Company, to offer our clients and friends a special deal to utilize their service.