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What is Homestead Exemption?

Mar 25
8:00
AM
Category | Mortgage Speak

How to Lower Property Taxes with Homestead Exemption

If you have recently closed on a home in the past calendar year, you are able to take advantage of a homestead exemption. A homestead exemption exempts a portion or a flat dollar amount of your home’s value from your annual property tax bill. To qualify, the homeowner must reside in the home and it cannot be a rental or investment property.

The deadline to file your homestead exemption application is April 1.

How much does my city or county exempt from my taxes?

To confirm the amount that your city or county exempts from your property’s value, contact your local tax assessor’s office for that information. The deadline and document requirements may be different for each area. For Georgia, South Carolina, and Florida residents, see the links below for resources on your local homestead exemption information:

Homestead Exemptions for Seniors, Disabled, and Military Personnel

Senior Citizen and Disabled Homestead Exemptions

Georgia, South Carolina, and Florida all have tax exemption programs for senior citizens and disabled homeowners that live in those states. The eligibility requirements such as age, income, and residency restrictions, vary from state-to-state, so be sure to check with your local tax assessor’s office. Disabled homeowners may need to provide documentation from the Social Security Administration showing proof of disability.

Military Homestead Exemptions

All BankSouth Mortgage’s main service areas, Georgia, South Carolina, and Florida offer special homestead exemption for active and veteran military service members whether they serve during peacetime or wartime. Requirements vary by city and county which means that all veterans or military members may not qualify.

Avoid Homestead Exemption Scams

Homestead exemption programs are not immune to scams, so be on the lookout for services that ask you to pay to file your applications. There is no fee to file an application for homestead exemption. Go directly to your local tax assessor’s office to file your application. For free!

After the first year of being in your new home, taking advantage of a homestead tax exemption can be a much welcome relief because of the unexpected expenses you may have encountered as a new homeowner. So be sure you file your homestead tax exemption by April 1 to take advantage of some financial relief.