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How to Protest Your Property Taxes

Over the years, we’ve saved our clients tens of thousands of dollars on their property taxes.  We encourage each and every homeowner to take a close look at your property tax assessment.  And if it seems out of whack – let’s find out if you’re right!  There’s no reason for you to pay an unfair share of taxes.  So, when you receive your tax estimate (usually between April 2 – 7 each year), don’t leave it sitting there like it’s laced with poison – open it!  And let’s find out if there’s work to be done.

First – how do you determine if the assessment is fair?

There are a few ways to accomplish this: you can have a real estate professional like us run a market analysis and let you know if the appraisal district is in the ballpark.  Remember: here in Texas we still have presumed privacy – so the appraisal district does not have exact information on what you paid for your house – or what your neighbor paid for theirs.  And – as such – there can be discrepancies.  If you just purchased your home (within the last six months) – you have a good idea of what the market value is – and your settlement statement will be helpful.  Or you can hire a tax protest professional.

Now what????

  1. Appeal (by May 4).  Each county’s appraisal district has a slightly different process.  We’ve included the links below for you:
    1. Williamson County, Protest Form
    2. Travis County, Protest Form

2. Be Patient – a response can take weeks – or months.

3.  Be Prepared!  There are many items you can bring that will help your case.  Remember to bring a copy to leave at the hearing.  They’ll want to review your evidence.  This can include:

a.  Market Analysis – we can help you with this!  This document will include properties the recently closed escrow that are similar to yours in size, age, neighborhood, etc.

b.  Details about your Home – perhaps your home has a lot of deferred maintenance, backs to a busy road, has condition issues that affect value.  Bring pictures, maps and evidence of this.

c.  Settlement Statement – if you recently purchased your home, you may only need to show your closing statement.

Remember: The folks who are making the decision on how much your home will be assessed at did not set the tax percentages.  While this is a frustrating process, be kind and respectful.

If we can be of further assistance – please reach out.  As always, we are here for you to count on.

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