Thursday, January 4, 2007

The Homestead

Brief moment of panic today when I realized the new year had begun and I had not filed for my homestead exemption. Mind you, I'm not even really sure what exactly a homestead exemption is. I know I have to go to some government office and apply for it (more paperwork, YAY!). I also know it's a tax thing and so "before the first of the year" seemed like a logical cutoff.

In the midst of this panic attack I called my friend the mortgage broker. After forcing myself to calm down and ask about her New Years' (which I really was curious about - she was asleep by 11), I gave her one of those, "Hey, while I got you... let me ask you about that homestead thing." Turns out that because of some deed thing or something I'm not even legally ALLOWED to apply till after the 3rd of this month and I have until March something to do it! Dumb luck wins again!

Why would I qualify for this tax exemption anyway? I'm hardly "homesteading." Don't I need a covered wagon, a mule team and some salted meats for that?

Tax season is going to make my stomach hurt a lot I think. I've been around the H&R Block before but this is a whole new area. Even before I owned this place I never knew what would happen at the end of a tax session... Refund? Pay? Pay AND Refund? A big reason I bought this new condo was for the tax benefits. Everyone from my Mom on down to that guy who sits next to me sometimes at work has extolled to me the tax virtues of home ownership. No one has really told me what the virtues are or why I might get them, but they all get big grins on their heads when they talk about their refund. I don't think I have lived here long enough to reap any of those rewards this year. I'm 100 percent clueless as to what will happen at the end of my tax preparation session. But that's still weeks and weeks away.

For NOW though, crisis averted! Now if you'll excuse me, Jack Twist and I have to water the horses and get the prairie schooner loaded with supplies for our journey across the plains to city hall so I can be there before March to apply for my homestead exemption.

1 comment:

dbv said...

it will save you about half of what the tax would be otherwise... it's a big deal... wish i could homestead two places... lol...