A Guide to Delinquent Property Taxes in Texas
If you have recently fallen behind on paying your Texas property taxes, the situation can feel quite overwhelming. Paying your property tax bill at once can be a daunting task for most, especially when dealing with penalties and late fees. Fortunately, there are several solutions if you can’t pay your delinquent property tax bill in a timely manner. For a clearer understanding of delinquent property taxes in Texas and how to navigate the situation, here is a guide to help you through the process.
What Happens When You Become Delinquent?
Texas property taxes are due every year on January 31st. So, if you don’t pay your property taxes by the deadline, you are considered delinquent on February 1st. What does it mean to be delinquent? This term is used to refer to any unpaid property taxes. When you become delinquent on your property taxes, you are faced with penalties, interest, and fees that are tacked onto your original bill.
According to Texas law, you are subject to a 7% penalty immediately on February 1st. From there, interest and penalty rates continue to accrue monthly, with one of the largest hits coming in July for most counties in the form of collections fees. After July, interest continues to increase with an additional 1% penalty that gets added each month. Check out our penalty chart here.
Not only are you faced with penalties, interest, and fees when you become delinquent, but a lien will also be placed on your property. A property lien is attached to a piece of property by the local taxing authority or creditor when money is owed to them by the homeowner. If these property taxes are still unpaid after a certain time frame, your home could end up in foreclosure.
How Long Can You Go Without Paying Your Property Taxes?
Unfortunately, Texas does not set a specific time frame for how long you can go without paying your property taxes. Instead, this decision is left to the taxing entities. Once a lien is placed on your property, taxing entities can decide when to begin foreclosure proceedings on a case-by-case basis. However, 2023 taxes cannot have lawsuits starting until July 1, 2024, while previous years can be collected on at this point. Due to the uncertainty of how long you can go without paying your taxes, you’ll want to settle your property tax bill as soon as possible.
How Can I Pay Off My Delinquent Property Taxes?
If you are delinquent on your property taxes and struggling to come up with your payment, there are a few options that can help provide some relief. Here are the four most common ways to resolve your delinquent property taxes.
Set up a payment plan with the county – Your property tax collector may offer a certain amount of time and installments to pay off your accruing taxes throughout the year.
Pay with a credit card – A temporary fix could be to pay off your bill with a credit card. However, you’ll want to beware of high interest rates.
Ask a family member or friend for a loan – If you know a family member or friend willing to help, establish a payback schedule to prevent impacting negative emotions.
Purchase a loan through a trusted property tax lender – Property tax loans offer the convenience of a lower interest rate and repayment plan on a schedule that accommodates your unique situation – not the county’s.
How Does the Johnson & Starr Property Tax Loan Process Work?
At Johnson & Starr, we will work out a loan that specifically fits your needs and your unique situation. Instead of paying the sometimes overwhelming and strict payment options through your county, maxing out your credit card, or dealing with complicated family loans, our property tax loans are flexible enough to adapt to nearly any loan requirement. Here are Johnson & Starr’s four simple steps to complete the loan process.
Step one – Fill out our simple application on our website or give us a call at 800-203-9157 and we’ll answer any of your questions and help you through the process.
Step two – Our licensed loan officers will collect and verify your information for approval.
Step three – Once approved, we will customize a repayment plan that fits your unique needs.
Step four – We’ll pay your taxes in full.
If this seems like the right fit for you and your situation, contact us today!