Harris County, Texas Property Tax

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Homeowners in Harris County, Texas pay an average property tax rate of 2.31%, resulting in an average of $3,040 per year in property taxes
Property taxes make up a big chunk of your yearly homeowners’ expenses. And tax rates vary wildly from one county to the next, making it harder to calculate just how much you’re going to owe.
This guide from the home and car insurance broker app Jerry will explore property taxes in Harris County, Texas, covering what you should know if you buy a home in Houston, America’s fourth-largest city, or its surrounding areas.
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Property tax 101

Collecting property taxes allows local governments to pay for essential services and public works. They typically only apply to “real property”—plots of land and the homes or other buildings occupying that land.
Your property is assessed by a local tax assessor, who determines how much you should owe based on local tax rates and market values. In Harris County, you’ll usually pay about 2.31% of whatever your house is assessed at. 
Property taxes fund your local government and its various budget items, like law enforcement, schools, fire safety, public works, public libraries, and more. Without this vital funding, your local government can’t provide these essential services.

What is the property tax rate in Harris County?

Harris County has an average tax rate of 2.31% of assessed home values. That’s a bit higher than the Texas state average of 1.81%, which is to be expected in the biggest city in all of Texas. Harris County homeowners end up paying an average of $3,040 per year in property taxes as a result.
You can learn more about property taxes in Harris County on the official Harris County Tax Office website.

How Harris County property taxes are determined

Harris Country is made up of more than 70 taxing entities, including the county itself. The Harris County Tax Office manages over 1.5 million tax accounts.
The budgets of those taxing entities play significant roles in determining property taxes one year after the next, weighed against the taxable value of the properties throughout Harris County.
The taxable value of each property is appraised and calculated by the Harris County Appraisal District (HCAD). If you believe your property appraisal is incorrect or unfair, HCAD is who you should reach out to for resolution.
This certified appraisal data gets uploaded to a computer network where it’s accessed by the Harris County Commissioners Court. Once property taxes have been calculated, property tax statements are printed out and mailed to property owners throughout the county.

What do Harris County property taxes pay for? 

Property tax revenues in Harris County help pay for several essential services, including:
  • Public school funding
  • Emergency services (police, fire, and medical services)
  • City streets
  • County roads
  • Libraries
  • Playgrounds
  • Public transportation
  • Building safety
  • Adult education programs
  • Sewer systems
  • Public housing
  • Museums

How to pay property taxes in Harris County 

In Harris Country, property taxes are due by January 31st of each year and are considered delinquent as of February 1st. If January 31st falls on a weekend or a holiday observed in Harris County, taxes are due on the next business day.
There are several ways you can pay your property taxes in Harris County, including:
  • Online via the Tax Assessor-Collector’s website. Paying using your Visa, MasterCard, Discover, or American Express credit or debit card has a non-refundable surcharge of 2.35 percent with a $1 minimum. You can also use an e-check with no surcharge.
  • Over the phone, by calling (713) 274-2273. They accept the same payment methods, with the same stipulations, as paying on their website.
  • By mail. You can only send checks through the mail; they won’t accept cash or card payments. Mail your check payment to: Ann Harris Bennett, Tax Assessor-Collector, P.O. Box 3547 Houston, Texas 77253-3547.
  • In-person by visiting any of the department’s branch locations. This is the only method of paying your property taxes with cash.
  • You can have your mortgage company pay your property taxes as well. Reach out to your mortgage company for details.

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FAQs

You’ll need to direct your protest toward the Harris County Assessment District. Use that link to find more information on their website or give them a call directly at (713) 957-7800. The Tax Assessor-Collector can’t help you with protests in Harris County.
Property taxes in Harris County, Texas are always due on January 31st, unless that date falls on a weekend or a county-recognized holiday, in which case they’ll be due the following business day.
In Harris County, the average property tax rate is 2.31%, which comes out to an average annual cost of $3,040. This is higher than the Texas average tax rate of 1.81% and more than double the national average property tax rate of 1.1%.

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