Dear TEXdot Family,
Well the time has expired to protest, unless you received your letter from the county after May 31, 2018 then you have 30 days from receipt of the letter to still file for a protest.
Why we want everyone to protest annually? Because Harris County can and will make a blanket reduction if there are more citizens willing to protest than they can handle. We saw this is 2009 when they reduced at 7.65% tax assessor value reduction across the board.
Once you have protested what do you do next?
You’ll receive a letter to attend two meetings. The first meeting is with the Appraisal Review Board. It’s with one person from the tax office. The second meeting is with a panel. Four people, citizens and an employee of the taxing authority. You do not have to attend the ARB to attend the panel however, if you miss both you have no one speaking on your behalf.
You will say that you believe the current market shift or the flood has caused a decrease in your property’s market value. Many counties have adjusted values accordingly in fairness of the flood. The numbers I have seen are almost 50% of the value, respectively.
Please remember our tax value lags about a year behind the market. This means that the assessed market value is based on sales from January 1, 2017 through December 31, 2017. Houses that closed after January 1,2018 are not considered part of that equation. Those numbers will be valid in 2019, when you go to protest the 2018 tax year. I’ve been keeping an eye on the numbers and I can see that the homes that have been flipped since the August 2017 flood are going to effect the 2018 taxes.
The same is true when the market is increasing. The counties are a full year behind in receiving their additional tax money. We all want our values to be low because that effects the money we pay, but be patient because these things take time.
If you are protesting your taxes for 2017 and the comparable you received from me didn’t help you fight your taxes, here are a few options for you to consider:
- Take your commencement statement (Closing documents or the HUD1) to a hearing. As long as a commission is paid the panel will consider the value of your home to be the amount you paid recently. This number could help for around two years.
- Take phots of the home in it’s previous condition from December 31, 2017 to the taxing authority.
- Try again next year!
If you need anything or have any questions about protesting in your county, feel free to call me!
“this little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine.”
Dorothy J. Wanko, President
Broker, TRLP, CIPS, GRI, ABR,
TAR and TREC Instructor
“Dot” – Professionals you can trust!
TEXdot REALTORS, Inc.
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