FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) — Two dozen new Texas laws went into effect this week — several of which the changes could help homeowners save thousands of dollars on property taxes.
“A lot of people don’t know the money they could be saving,” said J.R. Martinez with Kenneth Jones Real Estate and the Great Fort Worth Association of Realtors.READ MORE: Fourth Stimulus Check: Will Americans Get Another Relief Payment?
Texans over 65 years old, veterans and their surviving spouses, and people with disabilities may be eligible for tax breaks they don’t know about. Senate Bill 2060 makes those exemptions harder to miss.
“Now our appraisal districts have to let our homeowners know what they could be eligible for,” Martinez said.
Many homeowners set up an escrow account with a mortgage company or bank. They’ll hold on to your payments, and then pay your taxes directly.READ MORE: 2-Year-Old Wanders Into Neighbor's Backyard, Drowns In Pool
“So the issue is if the bank is late in paying those taxes, then the homeowner could be penalized and have to pay late fees,” Martinez said.
House Bill 1885 waives those penalties in some cases.
Another new law, House Bill 1313, helps homeowners who successfully protest their home value. Appraisers can’t come back and increase it the next year without clear and convincing evidence.
“It helps homeowners because it lowers their taxes,” Martinez said. “In Texas, and especially our area, we’re heavily taxed on property taxes. So with these wins, it helps our homeowners to keep some more money into their pockets and lowers their payments.”MORE NEWS: 2 People Hurt During 2-Alarm House Fire In North Fort Worth
Your county’s appraisal district should be able to answer most questions about your property appraisal.