Property Tax Frequently Asked Questions

For other questions you may have, please contact the Office of the Tax Assessor-Collector at 210-335-2251 for personalized assistance.

 

  1. How is my property value determined?
  2. What are some exemptions? How do I apply?
  3. When are property taxes due?
  4. What if I don't receive a Tax Statement?
  5. Will a lien be placed on my property if the taxes are paid?
  6. What if I sold my property last year?
  7. What if my mortgage company is supposed to pay my taxes?
  8. Can I get a discount on my taxes if I pay early?
  9. Do I have to pay all my taxes at the same time?
  10. What kind of payment options are available?
  11. What is a tax certificate, and how can I obtain one?
  12. How do I file for a Release of Lien on a manufactured home?
  13. What is a military tax deferral and how do I apply?

1. How is my property value determined? 

The Bexar Appraisal District identifies the property to be taxed, determines its appraised value, whether to grant exemptions, the taxable owner and mailing address and which taxing jurisdictions may tax the property.

For information on values, to file for an exemption, or to report changes in ownership or address, please call the Appraisal District at 210-224-2432. 

The Appraisal District mailing address is:
P.O. Box 830248
San Antonio, TX 78283-0248

The Appraisal District office is located at:
411 N. Frio
San Antonio, TX 78207

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2. What are some exemptions? How do I apply?

Exemptions reduce the market value of your property. This lowers your tax obligation.  Some of these exemptions are:

  • General Residence Homestead: Available for all homeowners who occupy and own the residence as of January 1 of the tax year.
  • Disabled Homestead:  May be taken in addition to the homestead exemption.  Persons with disabilities may qualify for this exemption if they (1) qualify for disability benefits under the Federal Old-Age Survivors and Disability Insurance Program administered by the Social Security Administration or (2) have a physician´s statement indicating the applicant is unable to engage or obtain any type of gainful employment.
  • Residence Homestead of 100% or totally Disabled Veterans: House Bill 3613 of 81st Texas Legislature authorized the creation of Section 11.131 of the Texas Property Tax Code.  This newly created Section entitles a 100% exemption for a residence homestead of a qualifying Disabled Veteran.  In accordance to the Tax Code, a Disabled Veteran who has a 100% service-connected rating from the United States Department of Veteran Affairs, or is unemployable, is exempt from taxation on the veteran´s residential homestead.  The exemption became effective for the 2009 tax year.  Because this is a newly created exemption, you will need to submit an application with the Bexar Appraisal District.  You may download the current application online.
  • Disabled Veteran or Survivors of a Disabled Veteran:  May be taken in addition to the homestead exemption in accordance with the applicant's disability rating established by the Veterans Administration.  This exemption can be taken on any property in Texas; it is not limited to the homestead property.
  • Over-65 Exemption:  May be taken in addition to a homestead exemption on their primary residence effective in the year they become 65 years of age or the year they acquire the property.

Some jurisdictions have limitations of taxes on homesteads of the elderly or disabled.  These are commonly called "tax freezes."  Taxes are limited to the amount paid on the homestead in the qualifying year plus the value of any additions to the property made after the qualifying year.  These limitations currently exist for all school districts.  The limitation is also effective for the Flood Control Fund, Alamo Community College, Bexar County, City of San Antonio, Shavano Park, Leon Valley, Live Oak, City of Alamo Heights, Balcones Heights, Castle Hills, Elmendorf, Olmos Park, and Helotes. 

You may defer or postpone paying taxes on your homestead if you are 65 years of age or older or disabled for as long as you occupy the residence.  A homeowner must file a deferral affidavit with the Bexar Appraisal District.  The deferred status only postpones the liability and therefore does not cancel the tax obligation. Interest accrues at the rate of five percent per year.  Once a property owner no longer lives or owns the home, past taxes and deferred interest become due on the 181st day.  The chief appraiser is responsible for granting/denying exemption applications.  A property owner or the owner's authorized agent must file the necessary application before May 1 of the tax year.

To apply for an exemption, call the Bexar Appraisal District at 210-224-2432. You may also contact their agency directly by email or visit their website to obtain the necessary forms.  The exemption will be forwarded to the tax office as soon as the Appraisal District updates their records.

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3. When are property taxes due?

Taxes are due in October of each year and must be paid by January 31st. In order to be timely, payment of taxes must be postmarked on or before January 31st.

Taxes are delinquent on February 1 of each year and subject to penalty and interest.  Due to a change in the statute, participating jurisdictions may elect to turn over their delinquent business property taxes to their delinquent tax attorneys for collection on April 1 of the year the taxes became delinquent, and are also subject to an additional penalty of 15% or 20% of the taxes, penalty, and interest due.

All other past-due taxes are surrendered for collection on July 1st of the year the taxes became delinquent and are also subject to the additional 15% or 20% collection fee.

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4. What if I don't receive a Tax Statement?

Failure to receive a tax statement does not affect the validity of the tax, penalty, interest, due date, the existence of a tax lien, or any procedure instituted to collect a tax.  Please contact the Information Center at 210-335-2251 to request a duplicate tax statement or you can check your account status online.

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5. Will a lien be placed on my property if the taxes are paid?

State law automatically places a tax lien on all taxable property on January 1 of each year to ensure that taxes are paid.

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6. What if I sold my property last year?

The person who owned the property on January 1 of the tax year is personally liable for the tax, even if he/she sold the property during the year.  However, let the buyer beware that the lien follows the property.

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7. What if my mortgage company is supposed to pay my taxes?


HB 923 of the 80th regular session of the Texas Legislature stipulates that if an Assessor mails a bill to the authorized agent, i.e., mortgage company, it is not necessary to mail a bill to the owner of record.  As a courtesy, tax statements will be mailed to the mortgage company and owner of record.

You may forward your tax statement to your mortgage company if your taxes are paid from an escrow account.

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8. Can I get a discount on my taxes if I pay early?

By official order of the Bexar County Commissioner´s Court dated September 9, 2003, tax payment discounts have been discontinued for Bexar County, Flood Control Fund and all 55 taxing jurisdictions that we are contractually obligated to collect.

We urge you to avail yourself of other payment options available such as the 10-Month Payment Plan for those 65 & over, Disabled Citizens and Disabled Veterans or the quarterly payment option.  These options have deadlines mandated by state law, so please read the back of your statement for more details.

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9. Do I have to pay all my taxes at the same time?

No.  You may select one of the payment options to pay your taxes in installments.  Payments are accepted; however, the entire amount must be paid on or before January 31 of the following year in order to avoid penalty and interest.

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10. What kind of payment options are available?

Split-Payment Option

With the Split-Payment Option you may pay the current year base tax in two equal installments without incurring penalty and interest if: (1) you pay at least one-half of the base amount on or before November 30 of the tax year, and (2) you pay the remaining amount on or before June 30 of the following year.  The correct amount is shown on the original tax bill for the year.

4-Payment Option

With the 4-Payment Option, which applies only to a property the person occupies as a residence homestead, and only to those persons who are disabled or 65 years of age or considered totally disabled under SSI.  If you are qualified for over 65 or disabled exemptions, you may make your payments in four equal installments without incurring penalty and interest, if paid in the following manner:

  • 1st payment due on or before January 31st
  • 2nd payment due on or before March 31st
  • 3rd payment due on or before May 31st
  • 4th payment due on or before July 31st

10-Month Payment Plan

The Bexar County Tax Assessor-Collector’s Office is the only County in the State of Texas with a 10-month payment plan.  The 10-Month Payment Plan applies to a property the person occupies as a residential homestead, with one of the following exemptions:

  • Disabled person exemption,
  • Age 65 or Over exemption,
  • Disabled Veteran exemption, or
  • Surviving spouse, age 55 or over, of any of the above groups.

If you have been granted one of the above listed EXEMPTIONS, you may begin your payments in October and make your payments in ten (10) equal installments without incurring penalty and interest, if paid according to the following schedule:

  • 1st: October
  • 2nd: November
  • 3rd: December
  • 4th: January
  • 5th: February
  • 6th: March
  • 7th: April
  • 8th: May
  • 9th: June
  • 10th: July

Note: The 10-Month Payment Plan may still be joined in November with 20% down (October and November payments).

Deadlines

The deadlines for the payment options are mandated in accordance with the Property Tax Code.  The U.S. Postal Service postmark is used to determine the timeliness of mailed payments.  Reminder notices are mailed to the current address on the tax records just prior to the deadlines.  Failure to receive a reminder does not extend the deadline for payment. 

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11. What is a tax certificate, and how can I obtain one?

A tax certificate is a document showing the current status of taxes; if delinquent, the certificate shows penalties and interest that are due according to tax records.  The fee to obtain a certificate is $10.00 per certificate; prepayment is required.

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12. How do I file for a Release of Lien on a manufactured home?

Effective June 18, 2005, House Bill 4238 amended Section 32.03 of the Texas Property Tax Code requiring taxing units to file a tax lien against a manufactured home with the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs no later than six months after the end of the tax year for which the tax is owed.  A person is prohibited from transferring title of a manufactured home until all tax liens perfected on the home have been extinguished or satisfied and released.  For additional information, please feel free to contact our Assessing Department at 210-335-6574 or by email.

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13. What is a military tax deferral and how do I apply?

Section 31.02 (b) of the Texas Property Tax Code stipulates that a person serving on active duty in the military may defer their tax obligation.  In order to qualify for a military deferral of taxes, a person must be on active military duty out of this state during a war or national emergency declared in accordance with federal law.  The property taxes for all locally owned property may be paid with no penalty or interest up to 60 days after the earliest of the following:

  • The date of discharge
  • The date the person returns to Texas for more than 10 days
  • The date of return to non-active duty status in the reserves
  • The date the war or national emergency ends

To postpone your property taxes, you will need to submit the required application (Form 50-305) and your military orders to the Bexar County Tax Assessor-Collector´s office.  You may download the application or by contacting our office directly 

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