February is here and Dallas property owners should be ready to pay off their latest property tax bill. However, 2020 was an unpredictable year and many people found themselves in unfortunate financial situations.
Property taxes cost owners thousands of dollars a year and can be even more immediate if the person owns the property without a mortgage to help pay the tax down. So, if your property tax bill arrived and you know you can’t pay the thousands of dollars upfront, the threat of a lien can be stressful.
Fortunately, this problem is more common than most owners would imagine, and there are several options available to help settle an account before legal action is taken. Here are some helpful tips to paying down your property tax bill, from trusted Dallas property tax consultants.
Appeal Your Property’s Valuation
We’ve said it before, but your local tax authority isn’t always right. Sometimes, even with regular increases, a property tax bill can seem substantially high.
If you feel that your property tax bill is incorrect, step forward and begin an appeals process against your property’s assessed valuation. Keep in mind, however, that most appeals are sought soon after the property tax bill is received. The window between receipt and necessary payment is narrow, so you’ll want to make sure that no mistakes are made in the process.
We recommend reaching out to a local property tax consultant to find out if an appeal is the best route to reducing your current property tax bill.
Make Late Payments on Your Tax Bill
Some property tax authorities will allow you to make late payments on your property tax bill as long as you’ve already started paying off the bill before February 1st. If you’ve paid off a fair amount of your property tax before the due date, late payments may be your best option for saving time and money.
However, the longer you draw out your late payments, the more penalties and interest are attached to your property. If you wait too long, you could end up in a legal bind with a collections attorney.
If this is the route you plan to take, we recommend reaching out to your taxing authority, finding out the remaining balance on the account, and determining if you’re financially able to pay off the bill in larger chunks within the next couple of months.
Ask About a Tax Deferral
If you are over 65 years old and your property is your homestead, you could be eligible to receive a tax deferral. Although a deferred tax won’t make your property taxes go away, it can help the elderly free up cash with the end of late penalties and the interest rate of future taxes will drastically reduce.
One caveat to this is failing to make any payments at all on the account. Over time, your bill will accumulate and when you pass on or no longer occupy the home, your family has 180 days to pay off the bill before the foreclosure process begins.
Take Out a Property Tax Loan
Finally, Texas residents have the opportunity to take advantage of property tax loans. As a last resort effort, the right property tax lender could pay off your balance and offer you a flexible repayment plan that doesn’t interfere with your future taxes.
Finding the right property tax lender can be a tough road to navigate. So, remember to reach out to a trusted personal property tax consultant first to make sure you make the right choices for your property.
Work with the Hegwood Group to Get Through Your Property Tax Problems
If you have a property tax bill that you need help settling, the property tax consultants of the Hegwood Group have the experience to guide you through the process.
From drafting a successful appeal to helping you find the best way to pay down your property taxes, our Dallas tax consultants can bring you peace of mind this tax season.
Contact us today to schedule a free consultation with a member of our firm.