5 Ways to Pay Off Your Property Taxes
Overwhelmed by an outrageously high property tax bill? Not sure how you’ll find the money to pay it? Feeling helpless? You’re not alone.
Property owners all over Texas are dealing with higher-than-ever property tax bills. Some are losing their homes because they can’t pay and face foreclosure by their taxing unit.
Don’t let this happen to you. Here’s a breakdown of your options when you’re faced with a bill you can’t pay.
Pay by Credit
If you have a high-enough credit limit, you can pay your property taxes by card. You’ll probably pay a convenience fee of a few percentage to use this option, but it can save you money in the long run.
The interest rate from your credit card company may be the best deal for your money. Also, your credit card company won’t hold the lien on your property, so you’re not at risk for foreclosure.
While it’s not an ideal option, you can pay your taxes late. Be aware of the additional costs you’ll face for delinquent property taxes, however.
Within the first year of overdue taxes, the amount due can increase by up to 47%. That would make a tax bill of $3,000 become $4,410 within just a year.
This is also a high-risk option—when you’re delinquent on your property taxes, your taxing unit holds the lien on your property. This means they have the right to file a lawsuit against you.
The end result of this lawsuit is foreclosure—they’ll sell your home to settle your debt. Even if you pay off your debt before the end of the lawsuit, you’ll have to pay the additional legal costs.
Apply for a Tax Deferral
If you’re 65 or older, a veteran, or a person with a disability, you may be eligible for a tax deferral on your home.
You will still have to pay your taxes, but the cost of paying late is reduced. Contact your taxing office to see if you qualify. They can tell you how to apply.
Arrange a Payment Plan
While Texas property taxes are set locally, there are statewide regulations that you can rely on to help. For example, the state requires your taxing office to offer payment plans on your homestead property.
This would give you more time to pay your taxes, prevent foreclosure, and reduce the overall cost of delinquency. These payment plans can be a good option, but they don’t offer a lot of flexibility.
A payment plan with your taxing office has several limitations.
- You will need to pay a portion of your debt as a deposit, up to 25%.
- These payment plans are limited to 12-36 month repayment schedules.
- All payments must be equal—you cannot pay extra on your loan when finances allow, meaning you cannot pay off your loan early.
- If you fail to pay, then retroactive penalties and interest will be added to your total.
- This type of payment plan can only be used once every two years.
If you’re going through a small rough patch, this may be the most cost-effective option.
A payment plan helps you get back on your feet if you’re confident you’ll have the money soon and won’t have trouble paying in the future.
If you’re not sure about the limited time frame, don’t have money for a deposit, or don’t qualify, you have another option.
Get a Property Tax Loan
If you have overdue taxes and need help settling your debt quickly, a property tax loan might be the best option. Property tax loans offer you the flexibility you need to recover from deep financial problems.
Here’s how it works: you apply for a property tax loan with a company like Direct Tax Loan. We settle your debt directly with your taxing unit.
The lien on your property passes to us, and we keep it until you pay off your loan. In 99.3% of property tax loans, the lien returns to the property owner with no problem.
That means property tax lenders in Texas have foreclosed on only 0.7% of properties. This is a much better rate than your taxing unit can offer.
Here are a few features of a property tax loan from Direct Tax Loan:
Additionally, you can rest easy knowing that the Texas state government regulates property tax loans for your protection. There is a cap on interest rates, so you won’t face outrageous interest from a property tax lender.
If you’re delinquent on your property taxes and want immediate help, contact us to get a loan to pay your property taxes. Ask for a free “Good Faith Estimate” to see if a property tax loan is the right solution for you.