October is right around the corner and as most Texans start settling into their annual Fall routine of football, school, and colder weather, your local tax office is kicking off their annual process of sending out property tax bills to all property owners in their local area. This property tax bill is the starting point for making sure tax obligations are met so the local government can fund the many school districts, infrastructure operations and specialty programs your community relies on.

What If I Don’t Receive a Property Tax Bill?

Although your county tax office will perform their duties to the best of their ability, as a property owner you are still responsible for making sure your property taxes are paid on time and in full. Failure to receive a property tax bill does not affect the validity of the tax, penalty, interest, due date, the existence of a tax lien, or any procedure instituted to collect a tax (Sec. 31.01 (g), Texas Property Tax Code). 

If you do not receive your bill, it’s important that you reach out to your county and confirm they have the correct information on your ownership of the property in question. Once you confirm the information is correct, counties may send you a new property tax bill or invite you to come visit their office to pick one up. Additionally, most counties have a website where you can look up your property and print up a statement for your records and even pay your bill online.

Do I Still Have to Pay the Property Taxes if I didn’t Receive a Property Tax Bill?

Yes. Not receiving a property tax bill does not extinguish your obligation to pay the associated property taxes for your home, business, vacant land, or commercial property. Also, all penalties and interest that you may incur as a result of not receiving a bill are still your responsibility. The Texas Property Tax Code states that county tax assessors “shall mail tax bills by October 1 or as soon thereafter as practical”.  You should contact your county tax office by mid to late October if you have not received your property tax bill.

What If I Cannot Pay All of My Property Tax Bill

Although it’s your obligation as a Texas property owner to pay property taxes, it does not mean that you only have one option for paying your bill. Your first stop should be a visit or phone call to your property tax office. Most counties offer split pay options which your property may qualify for. This means you will pay half of your bill before the year ends and then the remaining portion sometime next year. For exact payment dates and to find out if you qualify, please contact your county’s property tax office. 

If you do end up not being able to pay your property taxes by the January 31st deadline, your county may offer a delinquent property tax payment plan that can spread your payments out monthly. These plans may not prevent all penalties and interest from accruing but it does provide an option for you to work directly with the county to pay your property tax bill over a handful of months.

Another option is getting a property tax loan from someone like Ovation Lending. A property tax loan will pay the county directly for all your property taxes, penalties, interest, collection fees, and any associated legal fees incurred from delinquent property taxes. You will be placed on a manageable repayment plan for that loan with a term as long as 10 years to reduce your monthly payment amounts. You can make larger monthly payments if you have the available funds and pay your loan off early as needed.  To find out if a property tax loan is for you, please contact Ovation Lending at 877-419-7392.