• August 11, 2020

CHIEF'S APPRAISAL: Significant tax savings with a Homestead Exemption - Odessa American: Chief's Appraisal

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CHIEF'S APPRAISAL: Significant tax savings with a Homestead Exemption

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Posted: Sunday, July 5, 2020 2:46 am

Every year, thousands of homeowners miss out on tax savings because they have not signed up to receive the Residential Homestead Exemption. This tax savings is even more important with the current economic situation in Ector County. The exemption reduces the tax liability by excluding a portion of the property value from taxation. The process to receive the benefit is simple – complete an application with the Ector County Appraisal District designating the property on the application as your principle residence.

State law requires that each owner’s name and their ownership interest in the property be listed on the application. The address listed on the drivers’ license must match the property address on the application, and the ID must be issued in the year of the application. This address requirement may be waived for circumstances involving military personnel and individuals in health care facilities. Situations of temporary renewal extensions due to DPS closures will be handled on an individual basis. To ensure the accuracy of our records, we will need a copy of the Texas issued driver’s license or ID card for both individuals if the exemption is for a married couple. You can contact our office for more information.

In Ector County, all local taxing entities offer some exemption amount or percentage for the Residential Homestead Exemption. This exemption can help reduce your tax amount in three ways. First, the appraised value of your homestead property is limited to a 10 percent increase each year. This is a substantial savings when sales prices and market values are increasing by more than 10 percent. Second, after the appraised value is capped at the ten percent increase, the taxable value is further reduced by the amount of each local taxing entity’s optional homestead exemption. The local exemption amounts range from 10 to 20 percent. And third, homeowners receive a mandatory $15,000 additional reduction of their ISD taxable value. For a home valued at $100,000 in the Odessa city limits, the homestead exemption amounts to an annual tax savings of approximately $750.

Since the reason for filing an exemption is to lower the tax amount, applications should be filed by July 15th to avoid delays in granting the exemption. For properties with timely filed applications, the tax statement mailed in October will correctly state the exemption status and the reduced tax amount. Applications filed after July 15th will require corrections to the certified appraisal roll and could delay receipt of a corrected tax statement for up to eight weeks.

Homeowners who purchased a home in 2018 or 2019 and have not yet filed for the exemption may still file and receive the tax savings. Contact us for an application and return the completed application to our office along with copies of the owners’ driver’s licenses, or you may bring in the completed application and we will be happy to make the copies for you.

Filing the application for the Residential Homestead Exemption, the Disabled Person Exemption or the Over 65 Exemption is FREE. If you receive a letter from a company offering to file your exemption for you for a fee, please do not complete the application or pay the fee. What these companies do is not illegal, but there is no reason to pay a fee for a free service.

If you want to check the status of your exemptions, check your recent Notice of Appraised Value. You can also visit our website at www.ectorcad.org. You can search for your property by name, address, or account number. The exemption status is located in the Deed & Exemption Information section of the View Details page.

For any questions you have regarding exemptions and qualifications, please call us at (432) 332-6834.

Odessa, TX

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