Texas Property Tax Payment Options and Timing
The first few months of the year can be stressful for many Texas property owners. Between managing your regular finances and potentially having to pay a sizable property tax bill, it can be quite overwhelming. The team at Johnson & Starr has found that when property owners better understand the process and their options, it is generally easier to make an informed financial decision. In this post, we will focus on the various ways to pay your Texas property taxes and important aspects of the timing.
How Do I Pay My Texas Property Taxes?
If you haven’t already, you will want to pay your property tax bill through your county’s tax collector’s office. The process for this can vary in each taxing district. Your local tax collection office can give you the exact details of the property tax payment options available in your county/district, but the most common payment methods are as follows:
- Online payment via major credit card or an electronic check (eCheck). It is important to note that you may have to pay a convenience fee for paying online, but this is a simple way to pay your property tax bill, and generally allows for your payment to be quickly processed.
- Sending in a check payment via mail. Paying by mail is very common, but it will generally take more time to process your payment compared to other options.
- Delivering a payment in person to the tax office. This is the least convenient way to pay because of the time it takes out of your schedule, but depending upon your tax office, it may allow for your records to be updated as “paid in full” the fastest.
How Long Does It Take to Process My Payment if I Pay by Mail?
Since paying by mail generally has the longest processing time, many homeowners worry that their property tax payment will be delayed and marked delinquent, even if they paid on time. To avoid this concern, your payment must be postmarked with the mail carrier on or before the due date. This will allow your mail to be post-marked on time, and therefore your county or taxing entity will consider your payment submitted before the due date. For example, you want to pay your property tax bill on January 30th, right before the deadline, but the payment isn’t received and processed until February 5th. The tax office honors that you paid it on time in January, and you will not receive the February fees/interest applied that you would if you missed the deadline. It’s important to note that additional fees/interest are added to your original tax bill and continue to increase each month until the delinquent tax is paid in full. That said, timing can make a big difference in the amount of extra fees you will see on your bill.
What Happens If My Online Account Still Says I Haven’t Paid?
It is very common to see your account still showing that there is a payment due several days after your payment has been submitted. Depending on the size of your county and how modernized their processing systems are, it could even take more than a week before your account balance is updated. As long as you submitted payment on time, your tax office should eventually update your records appropriately.
Will this Be Different if Johnson & Starr Pays my Property Tax Bill?
If you choose to work with Johnson & Starr to get a property tax loan to help pay your bill, the same rules apply. When you close on your property tax loan with us, the first step we will take is to pay your Texas property tax bill in full. Our office will mail the check out by certified mail to have your payment safely and securely processed. Since tax offices honor the date that the mail was post-marked, you will avoid any additional late fees or penalties from the county effective on the date that we mail the payment. As experts in the Texas property tax system, we know how stressful it can be to see a late payment from your county tax office even after you’ve already paid. That’s why our team routinely follows up on payments to the county to resolve any issues that may arise. An added benefit of taking a loan with Johnson & Starr.
Don’t worry if you still see a balance for a few days after taking out your loan. Remember, it may still take the tax office several days to process your payment, especially at the beginning of the year. In the event of any issue arising with your payment, give us a call.
In short, once you put your trust in Johnson & Starr and your loan paperwork is completed, we take it from there. Contact us today to learn more about Texas property tax loans.