Austin is home to many, from folks with deep roots in Austin’s culture to multi-generational families. Austin is uniquely Austin because of the people who live here. Some homeowners may be feeling financial stress. Some may be feeling pressured from aggressive real estate investors and changing neighborhoods. What can they do?

This is a shortlist of some of the tools, resources, and organizations that may help.

Work with someone looking out for your best interests.

Austin has HUD-certified agencies that provide housing counseling & help answer questions:

 

Know the signs of predatory investors.

Random offers to buy your home. These can come in many forms from “handwritten” notes and phone calls offering to buy your house to misleading mailers like the one here.

High-pressure tactics. If the person offering to buy your home requires you to pay a “processing” or “administrative fees” without a written offer, it’s a bad deal. If they want you to sign a contract promising to sell your house to them, but don’t give you “earnest money,”  it’s a bad deal. If they don’t want you to have a third-party review of the paperwork, it's a bad deal.

Apply for tax relief tools.

Homestead Exemption is provided by Texas law for owner-occupied residential properties and lowers the taxable amount of your home. There is no fee to apply and you do not have to hire anyone to file for you.

You may be eligible for additional exemptions if:

  • you or your spouse are over 65;
  • disabled;
  • or a disabled veteran.

More information is available through the Travis Central Appraisal District 512.834.9138 and traviscad.org/homesteadexemptions

Home repair programs.

The City of Austin has several home repair programs for income-eligible Austinites. These programs serve to make houses safe, healthy, and accessible. They also may help Austinites stay in their homes.

Neighborhood Housing & Community Development staff are happy to answer your questions.  Call 512.974.3100, 311; or email NHCDCS@AustinTexas.gov.

Share this info with your neighbors!

You, your neighbors, and your neighborhood are all part of what makes Austin uniquely Austin.