If you’re living on a fixed income or struggling to hold on to your home, you might be relieved to learn about property tax deferral programs.
Generally offered through state or local governments, these programs enable eligible homeowners to postpone paying part or all of their property taxes — for anywhere from one tax year to as long as they own the home, depending on the program.
Following are examples of states in which property tax deferral programs are available to older residents as well as certain other residents — such as the disabled, veterans, or widows and widowers.
Just keep in mind that deferring property taxes is generally not free. In fact, it’s not unlike taking out a loan in that it effectively postpones your financial obligation to a later date, rather than waiving it. In the meantime, you will generally accrue interest — at a rate as high as 7 percent per year, as is currently the case in California.
In this regard, retirees who are looking to free up cash should look at property tax deferral programs similarly to how they consider a reverse mortgage. While the latter is ideal for certain retirees, it’s definitely not for others, as Money Talks News founder Stacy Johnson details in “Ask Stacy: Should I Get a Reverse Mortgage?”