If you bought a home in 2016 that is currently your primary residence, you need to file for Homestead Exemption. There should be no excuse or exception.
We’re talking about a golden opportunity to legally reduce your property tax liability.
So, if you fall in to this category, or, you purchased in previous years, keep reading. Some valuable nuggets to share, courtesy of my friends over at Shelter Mortgage (some creative edits and editions courtesy of A Is For Atlanta):
Homestead Exemption– Generally, a homeowner is entitled to an exemption on their home and the land underneath if the home was owned by the landowner and was legally their residence as of January 1st of the taxable year.
Application For Homestead Exemption– To be granted a homestead exemption, a person has to actually occupy the home, and the home is considered to be their legal residence for all purposes. (Persons that are away from their home because of health reasons will not be denied homestead exemption.)
If you fail to apply for the Homestead Exemption by the prescribed deadline (April 1 for all counties below), you’re out of luck until the following year. Definitely not something that you want to snooze on.
Types of Exemptions Offered by the State and County– Georgia offers homestead exemptions to all qualifying homeowners. In some counties, they increased the amounts of their homestead exemptions by local legislation above the amounts offered by the State. General rule of thumb is that your County will likely be more “generous” than the state is. For more information on state exemptions, click here.
Homestead Exemption Deadline– As stated above, the deadline is April 1. I repeat, the deadline for Homestead Exemption is April 1. This is not something that you can DVR, pause or get a do-over on. We’re talking government business here, people.