Property Taxes & The Texas Constitution

The Texas Constitution is one of the most critical documents in the state. It contains all the laws and rules that govern our lives here in Texas. You must follow specific rules if you want to avoid paying more than what is required. The property tax is collected by local governments and distributed throughout their communities.

Property taxes are a hot topic in Texas as the current system is deeply flawed. Even still, there are ways to ensure you’re paying your fair share of taxes while protecting your rights as a property owner. This article will explain how property taxes work in Texas and what you can do if you feel like your taxes are unfair or inaccurate.

The Texas Constitution Sets Out Five Basic Rules For Property Taxes In Our State

  1. Taxation must be equal and uniform. No single property or type of property should pay more than its fair share.
  2. Generally, all property must be taxed based on its current market value
  3. Each property in a county must have a single appraised value
  4. All property is taxable unless federal or state law exempts it from the tax
  5. Property owners have a right to reasonable notice of increases in their appraised property value

You Must Pay The Tax Even If You Disagree With The Tax Collector’s Appraisal

The tax collector will send you a notice that includes the amount, place, and time of payment. If you do not pay the delinquent taxes on time, the collector may issue an order to seize and sell your property. If you feel that your property was appraised incorrectly or have any other questions about your tax bill, contact your appraisal district (county). The staff at this office can help explain how to appeal the valuation placed on your property by the tax collector’s office.

The appraisal district is required by state law to determine the value of your property for ad valorem taxation. The law requires the appraisal district to do this for a single tax year.

State law also says that when determining property values, the appraisal district must follow specific rules and requirements outlined in Chapter 26 of the Texas Property Tax Code.

What Is The Role Of A Chief Appraiser?

The chief appraiser for each county is elected by the county commissioners’ court or appointed by the appraisal district board of directors. The chief appraiser is responsible for the appraisal district staff, budget, and policies. The chief appraiser also has the authority to hire and fire other appraisers. A chief appraiser’s term lasts four years, but their peers may re-elect them to the appraisal district board of directors.

The Texas Constitution also allows counties to have a different position called an “assistant chief appraiser.” This role can be filled by anyone who meets specific qualifications. These assistants help with many tasks, too: they’re in charge of reviewing applications for new businesses; they manage records related to taxes owed; they represent the county at public hearings, etc.

Property owners are notified of their current value when they receive notice-of-appraised value in April. The appraisal district sends the Notice of Appraised Value to the owner, who will use it to determine what to pay in property taxes. The notice also goes to the tax collector and assessor. The chief appraiser will have copies of all notices sent out.

The appraisal district maintains records on all properties, including ownership and sales information, property characteristics and improvements, exemptions, inventories of business personal property, agricultural land uses, market values, and other data used to appraise the property.

Property owners are encouraged to check their property’s status at the appraisal district website. The appraisal district maintains records on all properties, including ownership and sales information, property characteristics and improvements, exemptions, inventories of business personal property, agricultural land uses, market values, and other data used to appraise the property. Property owners can also find out the date their home was last re-valued by searching through the appraisal district’s database on its website.

You Have Legal Rights Even When You Have To Pay Your Taxes

You can appeal your property value. If you feel like the appraised value of your property is too high, you’re entitled to request a lower assessment and receive it within 60 days.

You can appeal your taxes. If you think that all or part of the assessed value for your property should be taxed at a lower rate than what was initially set, then go ahead and file an appeal with the Texas Tax Appraisal District (TAAD) without any penalties before November 1st.

You may be able to get some tax relief even after filing an appeal if TAAD finds that there has been an error in assessing your home’s value or there has been a mistake in calculating how much tax needs to be paid on it.

Want To Save More on Property Taxes?

The Ray Tax Group is Texas’ Premiere Property Tax consulting firm. ​We are ready and willing to assist you with your Texas property tax matters, whether for your home or a portfolio of commercial properties. Thank you for considering us as your partner in reducing your property tax burden.

Contact us here to see how we can help you save.