Tax Relief

Houstoners who take care of winter storm injury can get this tax break

While Houstonians scour life after winter weather, a recurring problem is storm damage. Now the Harris County Appraisal District is reminding locals that a little relief is possible this tax season.

Houstonians whose home has suffered at least 15 percent damage and who live in an area declared a disaster are eligible for a temporary relief from a portion of the property’s appraised value, according to the HCAD. That comes courtesy of the Texas Tax Code.

So what does qualify? Real estate (as houses and buildings), certain prefabricated houses, and tangible personal property used to generate income for a business are covered, according to a press release.

As Amy Davis, consumer reporter for KPRC2, notes, this exemption could significantly lower the January property tax burden.

Texas governor Greg Abbott declared the state a disaster area on February 12, which means that temporary exemption requests must be filed no later than May 28, according to HCAD. (Property owners must apply for the temporary exemption no later than 105 days after the governor declares the disaster area according to the tax code.)

The Disaster Claim Form, Form 50-312, is available online under the “FORMS” tab. Applicants should then send the completed form to the following address:
Harris County Appraisal District, Department of Information and Assistance, PO Box 522012, Houston, Texas 77292-2012.

Residents can also call or email 713-957-7800 help@hcad.org.

As CultureMap previously reported, Houston residents are also eligible for an emergency tax extension this year.

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