Texans tend to file a property tax protest when they receive a property tax assessment that serves as a prelude to what they’ll be paying in the next year during tax season. While appraisal districts do their best to get the numbers and facts right, sometimes mistakes get made.
Property tax bills have continuously become more expensive for homeowners, so even the smallest mistake can be costly.
If you believe your property appraisal is too high, protesting is an option. Find out what you need to do in order to increase your chances of reducing your property tax bill.
File Your Property Tax Protest On Time
This may seem like an obvious tip, but it’s one of the biggest mistakes people make when wanting to reduce a property tax bill. From the time an appraisal has gone out, homeowners have until May 15 to file their protest.
If you’re unsure of how to start the protest process visit your appraisal district’s website or meet with a property tax consultant for the specifics. Even though filing a protest doesn’t guarantee your taxes will be reduced, at least you have a start in the right direction. This is helpful because if you miss the deadline, then you’re just stuck paying what the appraisal determines.
Prepare for Your Presentation to the Review Board
Once you have filed your protest, you can ask for appraisal evidence from your district. This includes information about the market value of similar houses to yours, what they appraised at, sold at, etc.
This is all evidence that will help you prepare for your case in front of a review board once your protest has been approved.
Aside from the general evidence provided to you by your district, you can take your information a step further by working with a property tax consultant, acquiring statistics from local realtors or neighbors willing to help you in your time of need.
A Picture is Worth 1,000 Words
Proof of your believed value of a home is probably your best chance at the protest swinging in your favor. Aside from your collected evidence, make sure to bring pictures and documents that can prove things around your home that negatively impact its value. From storm damage to repairs and foundation damage, these are all issues that can contribute to you winning your protest.
However, keep in mind, you’re not the only person the board is reviewing that day, so we suggest keeping this type of evidence at the most concrete level possible.
Finally, stay calm. No one wants to go through a monetary-based negotiation with a hot-head. Remember, you are there to discuss information that shows what you believe your home should be valued at. Don’t enter the property appraisal review in an antagonistic fashion. Your review board is only human. Be civil, and make them want to listen to what you have to say. Your attitude can be the difference between “yay” or “nay.”
Get Help From The Hegwood Group!
Even with these protest tips on your side, going into the process alone can be a stressful situation. Don’t let your property taxes leave you swamped when the due date comes. If you find discrepancies in your appraisal, let The Hegwood Group help you appeal! Contact us today to find out more about the process and how we can get you in a great position to win.