Residential Property Tax Appeals
Residential property taxes are local taxes. Your local officials value your property, set your tax rates and collect your taxes. However, state law governs how the process works. You can play an effective role in the process if you know your rights, understand the remedies available to you and fulfill your responsibilities. Property taxes are based on monetary value. For example, the property tax due on a vacant lot valued at $10,000 would be ten times as much as the tax for one valued at $1,000.
Right to Protest
All owners of property, whether it is residential or commercial property, have the right to protest their property taxes. The term “property” as defined in the Texas Property Tax Code, includes but is not limited to, single family dwellings, townhomes, condominiums, patio homes, undeveloped land, farm land and almost any other property you can think of. Your most important right as a taxpayer is your right to protest to the appraisal review board (ARB). You may protest if you disagree with any of the appraisal district’s actions concerning your property.
You may discuss your objections about your property value, exemptions and special appraisal in a hearing with the ARB, an impartial panel of your fellow citizens. Most appraisal districts will informally review your protest with you to try to resolve your concerns.
If You Rent or Lease Your Property
If you lease property and are required by the lease contract to pay the owner’s property taxes, you may appeal the property’s value to the ARB. You may make this appeal only if the property owner does not. This appeal right applies to leased land, buildings and personal property. The appraisal district will send the notice of appraised value to the property owner, who is required to send you a copy. If you appeal, the ARB will send any subsequent notices to you.
Know Your Rights
State law prohibits the Comptroller’s office from advising a taxpayer, appraisal district or ARB about a protest. State law also prohibits the Comptroller from intervening in a protest. In order to protest your property taxes, you or your appointed agent must send notice to the appraisal district by May 31st of the current tax year.
Source: Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts Website