What’s a Homestead Exemption?

The homestead exemption is legal provisions that are created to safeguard your home from the wrath of certain types of creditors, or to protect against circumstances which result from the homeowner’s passing or the alienation of the owner without spouse’s permission.┬áThe main purpose in homestead exclusions is to serve as a safeguard for the family members by providing protection from instability and independence.

Alongside attracting new settlers to areas where homes are protected to the maximum extent Homestead exemptions also encourage homeownership. They also provide tax relief for homeowners, as well as shielding the property of a certain amount from tax.


  • Homestead exemptions are a law which imposes some limitations on the property, on the property or the surrounding area, and can be called a homestead.
  • Homestead exemption is only applicable to primary residences of the owner and shields them from unsecure creditor.
  • The homestead exemption of the state is a bit misaligned with respect to protection from bankruptcy as the bankruptcy law in the United States only covers homes whose equity does not exceed $25,150 for litigation that was initiated on or after April 1st in 2019.

What is a Homestead Exemption Functions

Homestead exemption laws exist in all states of the United States, although their extent of application and protection offered vary from state to state. The homestead exemption is limited to the home of the owner and does not apply to any other property or homes. The exemption is required to be renewed in the event that a spouse changes the primary residence of their spouse.

The restrictions placed on homes of the primary are typically measured in terms of monetary value and varies according to the state. The restriction of an area usually comes with a restriction, but it also differs in the amount of acres and usually allows for an area that is much bigger for a homestead in rural areas.

Exemption from creditors

Different states apply homestead exemption laws in different ways. While acreage limitations may be in place to protected homes in certain states, certain states provide unlimited security against creditors with no collateral on the property.

A protection limit against creditors can range from $5,000 to $500,000 or $30,000-$50,000. The protection amount is for the equity of the homeowner instead of the worth of the house. The equity of the home’s primary is defined as an amount that is the sum of the remaining balance of the home mortgage and the other transaction costs, which are subtracted from the value.

Creditors are not able to benefit from the forced sale of a house with equity that is lower than the limit that is required. However homeowner could be forced to sellthe home, but retaining a part of the yield, provided that the equity is lower than the maximum limit.

Homestead exemption shields homeowners from creditors with no credit history who could attempt to pay for claims with assets, non-secured creditors like banks that require a mortgage for the property to self-insure themselves.

Exemption from Bankruptcy

Laws relating to bankruptcy-related exemptions for homesteads are the same as those arising from other homestead exemptions. The federal bankruptcy law shields the property from sale when its equity is not exceed $25150 for bankruptcy petitions that are filed on or after April 1st 2019. The law specifically states that the trustee of the bankruptcy will be vested as of the date that the bankruptcy petition was filed. For bankruptcy cases that occur between April 1st between 2016 to March 31 2019, the exemption amount is $23,675.

Homeowners are subject to local laws to make a declaration before the property is exempt from the requirement to file a declaration. Failure to do so is a condition which will result in bankruptcy immunity being declared null and void. This is explained by the fact that the trustee is put at the time when the petition is filed in the role of a creditor who holds an interest on the home of the bankrupt.

Property owners who are obliged to comply with state limitations are considered to be more favorable. However, some states allow either the state limit as well as the Federal limit be utilized. One consequence of state policy is that bankrupts in states that have no homestead exemptions – like New Jersey and Pennsylvania – are protected by federal limits even when the state exemption for homestead exists.

Exemption from Tax

The local government guards the property of the debtor in the sense of not granting its own right to collect or levie taxes according to the local laws of the state. It is the assessed worth of the property is the basis for the homestead tax to be paid. In most cases, it is the responsibility of the local tax assessors for the government.

A property tax could be fixed or a proportion of the value of the house. Homestead tax exemptions provide tax reductions, based upon the specific state. The exemptions, however, do not apply to renters with low incomes who, typically, rely upon tax relief. One benefit of the exemptions is that the survivor spouse can live in their residence after a decrease in income due to incapacitation or the death of a spouse.

California Homeowner’s Exemption vs. California Homestead Exemption

The homeowner’s exemption is an exemption for property tax. It is a property tax exemption. California state constitution allows for an exemption of up to $7,700 in assessed value from tax assessment for any property that is owned and used by the owner as his principal place of residence. This means that this exemption can take away the equivalent of $70 from your property tax bill each year. It may not seem like a lot however, it’s relatively simple to attain and the savings add to a lot! There’s no reason why you should not reap the benefits.

To be eligible to receive the exemption on property you must be the owner or co-owner and you must be using it as the principal residence (Vacation homes aren’t eligible!). Any property that you use as your primary place of residence and subject to property tax is eligible. Also, you must submit an exemption claim to the County Assessor. Fortunately, once the exemption has been granted you don’t have to file an application unless your title on the deed that relates to the property is changed.

There’s a catch when you want to refinance the home or are planning to transfer your property out of (or into) the trust of a living take note that doing this could require you to alter the title of the deed of the property. When you do this you must submit a new exemption claim in order to keep receiving the exemption.

Homestead Exemption

A homestead exemption on the contrary is a totally different (and slightly more complex) species. It’s a bankruptcy exclusion that is designed to safeguard homeowners from losing their home to creditors. If you are sued by a creditor but loses the case, the lender may be able to pay the judgment (translation to ensure that they are paid) through the sale of assets owned by the person who is suing including the home that the debtor owns. California homestead exemption California homestead exemption is a safeguard for the equity of homeowners up in the range of exemption, even if the house is sold. The idea is to make sure that the families of debtors are able to put into the purchase of a new house, in the event that their home is taken off the market without prior notice. The exemption is available to any resident of a residence which could be an apartment, trailer or mobile home, boat and so on.


In the event of an emergency in the family or business which requires the owner to utilize the capital that was invested in the property, it’s advised to sell the house in the event of a distressed sale.

In some rare instances the owner of the property may sell the property with an possibility of repurchasing. But this method has many issues from the perspective of the buyer, which means is not usually readily available.