Williamson County homeowners, 65-plus and disabled to see property tax relief

Williamson County homeowners, 65-plus and disabled to see property tax relief. (Ali Linan/Community Impact Newspaper)
Williamson County homeowners, 65-plus and disabled to see property tax relief. (Ali Linan/Community Impact Newspaper)

Williamson County homeowners, 65-plus and disabled to see property tax relief. (Ali Linan/Community Impact Newspaper)

The Williamson County Commissioners Court voted to extend the age 65 and older and disabled individuals property tax exemption as well as add an exemption for homeowners on May 25.

The move would increase the existing $30,000 tax exemption for residents age 65 and older to $90,000 and the $20,000 tax exemption for disabled residents to $75,000. The new homestead property tax exemption is set to 1.5% of assessed value or $5,000, whichever is greater.

This change to exemptions will have a $5.6 million tax impact on the county’s revenue, officials said.

These exemptions are only applied to county taxes, which make up a portion of an individual’s overall taxes. Other taxing entities include cities and school districts.

Individuals must apply for the exemption online through the Williamson Central Appraisal District website. The application process is free.

“I especially believe those that are age 65 or are reaching that threshold need to know that Williamson County is a place where they can retire and stay, and not a place where they have to retire and leave,” Williamson County Judge Bill Gravell said.

By state law, homestead exemption must be tied to a percentage and a minimum of $5,000, county officials said. Williamson County homes valued at $333,000 or less will receive the $5,000 exemption. Homes valued greater than $333,000 will see the 1.5% option kick in, said Larry Gaddes, county tax assessor-collector.

Applying and extending tax exemptions is a more beneficial option for homeowners rather than an overall tax rate reduction because it applies only to a narrow number of properties rather than all taxes properties including commercial within the county, Gaddes said. He added that if the county went with a lower tax rate to achieve the same amount of reduction, it would have a miniscule impact on the average homeowner.

“If you are a homeowner, or even a business, you wouldn't even notice that [the county] did anything if [it] lowered the tax rate to have the same $5.6 million effect,” Gaddes said. “Adopting an exemption in my opinion, is [the] best targeted relief [the county] can provide.”

According to WCAD data, the county is expected to see a $14.6 billion year-over-year increase in overall taxable value, jumping from $1.93 billion in existing property value in 2020 to $10.92 billion in existing property value in 2021.

Residential home values and median prices of homes also continue to rise.

In order to qualify for the homestead exemption, individuals must live in the home as of Jan. 1, and it must be their permanent address with either a driver’s license or utility bill attached to the address, officials said.

Gaddes said a common misconception is that exemptions are a freeze on property values, which they are not. Instead, exemptions are a freeze on one's taxes. He added that individuals can qualify for both the homestead and either the 65 and up or disabled exemptions but not all three.
By Ali Linan
Ali Linan began covering Georgetown for Community Impact Newspaper in 2018. Her reporting focuses on education and Williamson County. Ali hails from El Paso and graduated from Syracuse University in 2017.


Lingering symptoms, long-term impact of COVID-19 will take time to fully understand

Dr. Mary Katherine Theoktisto answers questions regarding the virus.

Road construction Adobe Stock
Nightly closures on I-35 mainlanes north of Georgetown planned this weekend, June 11-13

Both directions of I-35 mainlanes will be totally closed at points this weekend as the state demolishes a bridge.

The extension of Kenney Fort Boulevard is underway north of Hwy. 79. (Amy Bryant/Community Impact Newspaper)
North-south road in Round Rock makes progress; homestead exemption OK'd in Leander and more Central Texas news

Read the top business and community news from the past week from the Central Texas area.

Candlewood Suites is located at 10811 Pecan Park Blvd., Bldg. 2, Austin. (Chris Neely/Community Impact Newspaper)
Austin City Council votes for improved coordination with local counties on homeless issues; no action taken on Williamson County Candlewood Suites purchase before summer break

Council members unaimously approved a resolution aimed at improving collaboration on homeless strategy between Austin and local county officials June 10.

Gypsy Ice can be found at different locations in Georgetown and be requested for events. (Courtesy Gypsy Ice)
Gypsy Ice sweets trailer now open in Georgetown

Gypsy Ice offers a variety of naturally flavored shaved ice.

Amberlin Georgetown will feature resort-style amenities. (Courtesy Compass Communications)
New active adult community Amberlin Georgetown to bring 188 residential units

The active living community will provide 188 residential units for residents 55 and older

Wayne Reed has served as assistant city manager since January 2016. (Courtesy city of Georgetown)
Assistant City Manager Wayne Reed leaves Georgetown

Police Chief Wayne Nero will serve as interim assistant city manager.

The amendment will allow for an increase of residential units from 7,500 to 7,575 at 135 Sun City Boulevard. (Courtesy Hunter Pontious)
75 new residential units coming to Sun City

Georgetown City Council approved the increase on June 8.

Gov. Greg Abbott, center signed Senate Bills 2 and 3 into law June 8 in response to the devastating winter storm last February. (Trent Thompson/Community Impact Newspaper)
Gov. Abbott signs bills to reform ERCOT and weatherize Texas power grid

The bills will go into effect Sept. 1 and aim to reform ERCOT leadership and increase accountability and communication among power agencies.

Other sections of the city charter to be considered for revision include qualifications for city employees, City Council vacancies and general power, among others. (Ali Linan/Community Impact Newspaper)
Georgetown City Council leans toward establishing term limits

Council members agreed that if the charter amendments receive voter approval, they would take effect after Jan. 1, 2022.