Property tax: Late fees, estimation & more

by Nancy Brenseke 07/10/2022

Like most recurring expenses, property taxes have late fees if not paid on time. While the amount and specific consequences vary from one municipality to the next, property tax late fees are something homeowners will want to avoid. Here are some basic facts about paying your property taxes on-time and in the correct amount:

How property taxes are calculated

Property taxes are calculated based on many factors. However, you can estimate them for yourself by multiplying the assessed value of the home by the local tax rate. The number you come up with is likely not the exact amount you'll see on your bill, but it's a great way to familiarize yourself with the general amount.

How to pay your property taxes

Luckily, most property tax payments get wrapped into your monthly mortgage payments. Otherwise, you have the choice of paying the taxes directly on an annual or semi-annual basis. Depending on your tax authority, this may mean writing and mailing a check or paying through an online portal.

How to know if you qualify for exemptions

There are some exemptions for property taxes. Some of the most common exemption types are available to seniors, people with disabilities, veterans and homesteaders. These exemptions usually don't eliminate taxes completely, but can significantly reduce the cost.

What happens if you don't pay your taxes

If you fail to pay your taxes, you'll get a tax lien placed on your home. Liens can adversely affect your credit score, and if taxes are left unpaid for too long, they can become levies allowing the government to seize your property. It's important to stay up to date on your property taxes and reach out to a professional if you expect any issues paying on time.

About the Author
Author

Nancy Brenseke

I love the ocean, sand and sunshine! That's why I call Hilton Head Island/Bluffton my home! I relocated to Hilton Head Island over 20 years ago from North Carolina after graduating from East Carolina University - Go Pirates! I continue to be successful in real estate for the past 13 Years and with my experience working with top resorts and gated communities, I have cultivated attention to detail, understand the importance of listening first and have the positive "Can Do" attitude in all situations. I offer my sellers and buyers the BEST advice to achieve their real estate goals. I enjoy spending time with my family boating on the May River, attending festivals along Old Town Bluffton and building sandcastles on HHI beaches.  

"Nancy Brenseke is the type of realtor that everyone should contract to sell their property. She is very knowledgeable and gave us valuable information when listing the townhome. The whole process went smoothly and Nancy was responsible for that. She always communicated with us which kept us confident that all aspects of the closing were under control and on track. I highly recommend Nancy Brenseke." ~ Deb Bluffton, SC

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"Nancy went the extra mile on everything around selling the condo. I would use her again and would recommend her to anyone I come in contact with. Our condo sold in 1 day! She was excellent and hardworker. She helped in all aspects of selling, from marketing with great number of pictures, to home inspection with helping us find contractors to fix the inspection issue so were were able to close." Eric - Cumming, GA