How to Lien a Homestead Property in Texas

How to Lien a Homestead Property in Texas

Texas is a debtor-friendly state and has special protections for homestead properties. A homestead is defined in Chapter 41 of the Texas Property Code. If a property qualifies as a person’s homestead, there are special steps a contractor must follow to secure a lien. These steps are designed to make it more difficult for a contractor to lien the property and to provide extra protection against creditors to the person claiming the homestead.

General Contractor Lien Requirements

If you are a general contractor on a residential homestead property and you want to retain your right to lien you must:

  1. Have a written contract between you and the owner of the property. If the property owned by a married couple, then the signature of both spouses is required.
  2. The signed contract must be filed in the property records of the count in which the homestead is located prior to any work being performed on the property.
  3. The contract must contain the statutory warning outlined in Chapter 41.007(a)(3) of the Texas Property Code.
  4. Include the following notice in a conspicuous location with at least ten point bold face font at the top of the lien affidavit: NOTICE: THIS IS NOT A LIEN. THIS IS ONLY AN AFFIDAVIT CLAIMING A LIEN.
  5. For a statutory lien, file a lien affidavit no later than the 15th day of the third month after the month in which the indebtedness accrues. See Texas Property Code Chapter 53.052. This deadline is a month shorter than the lien notice deadline on a non-residential construction project. If this deadline is missed a contractor may still have a constitutional lien.

The contractor should also provide the owner with the disclosure statement outlined in the Chapter 52.255 of the Texas Property Code. Failure to do this does, however, does not invalidate the contractor’s right to lien.

Subcontractor Lien Requirements

Subcontractors on homestead properties must follow the following provisions to secure a lien on a homestead property:

  1. Because a homestead is a residence, a subcontractor must follow the notice requirements for residential construction projects found in Chapter 53.252 of the Texas Property Code and send the notice by the 15th day of the second month after the month in which the work was performed. This deadline is a month shorter than the deadline for non-residential projects.
  2. Include the following notice in a conspicuous location with at least ten point bold face font at the top of the lien affidavit: NOTICE: THIS IS NOT A LIEN. THIS IS ONLY AN AFFIDAVIT CLAIMING A LIEN.
  3. File a lien affidavit no later than the 15th day of the third month after the month in which the indebtedness accrues. See Texas Property Code Chapter 53.052. This deadline is a month shorter than the lien notice deadline on a non-residential construction project.
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