Help For Your House

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Below you’ll find helpful information on getting help for your house.

Many organizations also offer financial assistance. Contact for availability.

Federal Rehabilitation Tax Credit
Administered by the National Park Service and the Internal Revenue Service in partnership with the Texas Historical Commission. The Federal Historic Preservation Tax Incentives program preserves historic buildings, stimulates private investment, creates jobs, and revitalizes communities. It has leveraged over $58 billion in private investment to preserve and reuse 37,000 historic properties since 1976.

Texas Historic Preservation Tax Credit Program  (For Income Producing Properties)
The new state historic tax credit is worth 25 percent of eligible rehabilitation costs and is available for buildings listed in the National Register of Historic Places, as well as Recorded Texas Historic Landmarks and Texas State Antiquities Landmarks. The Texas Historic Preservation Tax Credit Program was established through Texas House Bill 500 during the 83rd Texas Legislative Session. The new state historic tax credit program goes into effect on January 1, 2015. The program is administered jointly by the Texas Historical Commission (THC) in cooperation with the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts.

Local Tax Exemption For Substantial Rehabilitation
A tax exemption is available for designated local landmarks and properties within local historic districts that undergo a substantial rehabilitation. Substantial rehabilitation includes improvements that extend the life of a building such as roof, foundation, and siding work; electrical, plumbing, and HVAC system work; other structural work; and interior work. Following substantial rehabilitation of residential properties, City property taxes are frozen at the assessed value prior to rehabilitation for up to 10 years. Substantially rehabilitated commercial properties are eligible for the 5 Zero/5 Fifty tax exemption: no City property taxes are owed for the first five (5) years, and for the next five (5) years the City taxes are assessed at 50% of a post-rehabilitation appraisal. The tax exemption for substantial rehabilitation remains with the property regardless of change of ownership or sale of the property.

Fuller Center For Housing
Homeowners in need can apply to a Fuller Center covenant partner to have their homes restored to a simple, decent living condition. Once repairs are complete, The Fuller Center works with each homeowner to help them structure an affordable repayment plan.

Conservation Society of San Antonio Grant Program
Grants are awarded annually for the restoration or rehabilitation of houses that are at least 50 years old. The most commonly granted amount is in the $5,000 range, which can be used towards exterior work that is not yet underway. The deadline to apply is in September with notifications in December. Please see our grants page  for more information.

Purchasing and owning a historic home presents some unique challenges, as well as rewards. If you want to buy a historic home, or already own one, the following programs and organizations can provide assistance and advice.

City Of San Antonio Office Of Historic Preservation Resources

Links to codes & ordinances, design guidelines, forms and applications, violation reporting and more!

Local Tax Exemption

For Owner-Occupied Residences in New Historic Districts.

Merced Housing Texas

Provides homeownership opportunities to low income families in inner city neighborhoods.


REnewSA is a collaborative City initiative that provides buyer education and assistance programs. Goals are to: REinvest in neighborhoods, REvitalize commercial corridors, REhabilitate homes, REstore historic structures, REmove blighted structures and graffiti, and REgreen through sustainable design.

Research Tips

Handy tips on resources to use to research the history of your house, including when it was built and who lived there before.

San Antonio Alternative Housing

Promotes affordable housing to low and moderate income families, provides housing education and ownership counseling.

San Antonio Neighborhood Housing Services

Lending resource center and homeowner education.

The following sources can help ensure that your repair or renovation project preserves your home’s historic features.


Scott’s Historic Home Improvement Contractors List is a free site that provides information about various types of contractors used by local owners of historic homes.

Design Consultation

Free guidance provided by the City’s Office of Historic Preservation for proposed rehabilitation, new construction, and other projects.

Historic Homeowner Fair

This free annual event brings homeowners together with preservation experts, knowledgeable tradesmen, and City departments to discuss how to care for and maintain historic homes.

Technical Preservation Services

The National Park Service provides online guidance for preserving, rehabilitating and restoring historic buildings. This site also includes information on sustainability, such as energy efficiency and new technology for historic buildings.

Secretary Of The Interior’s Standards For Rehabilitation

Used by the City to evaluate proposed projects on individual landmarks and properties in historic districts; also used to determine if a rehabilitation qualifies as a Certified Rehabilitation for Federal tax purposes.

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