Applying for a Texas Homestead Exemption

Applying for a Texas Homestead Exemption

You can reduce your home’s taxable value by filing a homestead exemption on your primary residence. School districts are required to offer $25,000 homestead exemption. Additional homestead exemptions may be offered by other taxing units. In order to qualify, you must own your home, use it as a primary residence and do so by January 1 of that tax year. You are only allowed one primary residence and one homestead exemption. There are several different types of homestead exemptions for which you may qualify:

School Taxes
All residence homestead owners are allowed a $25,000 homestead exemption from their home’s value for school taxes.

Age 65 or Older or Disabled Persons
For those age 65 or older or disabled, the school districts offer an additional $10,000 residence homestead exemption in addition to the $25,000.

  • 65+ local option exemption: The homeowner must be at least 65 years of age and live in the home. Upon death, the surviving spouse may continue to receive the exemption if they are at least 55 years of age and also own and live in the home. The surviving spouse will need to reapply for the exemption as it will not transfer automatically.
  • Disabled exemption: You must meet the definition of disabled for the purpose of receiving disability insurance benefits under the Federal Old-Age, Survivors and Disability Insurance Act.
  • Those that qualify for both the age 65 and older and disabled must choose which exemption to claim, as the owner cannot receive both exemptions.

Optional Exemptions

Any taxing unit (i.e., city, county, school, or special district) has the option to offer an exemption of up to 20% of a home’s taxable value, but no less than $5,000. This is in addition to any other home exemption for which an owner qualifies.

100% Residence Homestead Exemption for Disabled Veterans
To qualify for a 100% exemption on the total appraised value of the veteran’s residence homestead, the owner must receive 100% disability compensation due to a service-connected disability and a rating of 100% disabled or of individual unemployability from the US Dept. of Veterans Affairs. Surviving spouses are also entitled to this exemption (with certain restrictions) if the disabled veteran did or would have qualified for the exemption at the time of death.

Surviving Spouses of Members of the U.S. Armed Services Killed in Action
Surviving spouses of those in the U.S. armed services who are killed in action are entitled to a 100% property tax exemption on their residence homestead as long as they do not remarry.

The Application for Residence Homestead Exemption is required to apply for a homestead exemption. The form must be completed and submitted to the appropriate appraisal office no sooner that January 1 but no later than April 30. You can WebFile or use one of the downloadable PDF forms from the site. You won’t have to reapply again for that same residence once you receive an exemption unless the appraisal office notifies you in writing. If you move to a new home or if you pass your 65th birthday before January 1, you will need to fill out another application. If you have any questions about how to complete and submit this form, please don’t hesitate to contact us!

For more information, please contact your County Appraisal District.

Brazoria County
Chambers County
Fort Bend County
Galveston County
Harris County
Liberty County
Montgomery County 
Victoria County
Waller County