A property tax protest is an opportunity to provide evidence to the appraisal district as to why your property value is inaccurate. Your appraised value is used to calculate your property taxes.
People often try to reduce their property taxes when their home’s assessed value is too high. However, even if you think your home was appraised fairly or close to market value, it’s important to review your property tax assessment and consider filing a protest.
Here are some reasons why you should protest your property taxes.
1. Filing a Protest is Free
Protesting your property taxes is free, unless you live in one of the few states that have a property tax protest filing fee.
Knowing that you can protest at no cost to you is reason enough to make an effort, because you have nothing to lose. Protesting will not raise your taxes or the value of your property.
2. You Can Protest Every Year
If at first you don’t succeed, try, try, and try again. Property taxes are the only taxes that can be appealed, and you can appeal them every year. This means that even if you couldn’t lower your taxes this year, you have another chance the next time around, and the time after that.
You should protest every year, because some of the factors affecting the ARB’s decision might have been missed during your previous attempt or since changed.
Even if the appraisal district did not change your home’s value since the last appraisal, you should still protest. Changes in legislation, mass appraisal methods and different ARB panels are just a few reasons your appeal could have a different outcome each year.
Learn how NTPTS can help you protest your assessed value annually.
3. You Can Protest Even if Assessed Value is Lower than Market Value
You may be able to achieve a reduction even if your home’s assessed value is less than the market value. Filing an unequal appraisal protest tells the appraisal district that you feel your property is not fairly appraised when compared to other properties in your area.
If a very similar property is appraised at a much lower price, you could end up lowering your home’s value.
4. Fix Inaccurate Appraisal Information
Protesting your taxes gives you the opportunity to note any factors that may lower your home’s appraised value, which can, in turn, lower your property taxes. If the property record includes inaccurate information regarding your home’s classification, quality, features, or characteristics such as square footage, your appraised value may also be inaccurate.
Note Damages to Your Property
If there has been any damage to your home since the last appraisal, or if any large systems like your property’s HVAC unit need to be replaced or repaired, it’s important to note, as these details can decrease the property value.
Your home may be worth less if it’s discovered to look worse on the inside than the outside. Also, if things don’t work as expected, then the market value could decrease, along with your property taxes.
Noting any problems with your home when you protest could save you a lot of money.
Highlight Features of Your Property
You should make sure that the ARB knows about any special features or upgrades you’ve made to your property since the last appraisal. Protesting your property taxes gives you the opportunity to do so.
If you’ve improved your home’s insulation, or if you’ve installed any green or energy-saving appliances, the ARB may give you a better deal on your taxes.
5. Hearing Evidence is Free and Can Help
Sometimes the appraisal district’s values are too high or too low due to the mass appraisal process, which relies on a significant amount of accurate data and factors. If your property is appraised too high, then you’re paying more in taxes than you should.
To know more about your home’s value, you need access to the appraisal district’s hearing evidence, which you can only see when you file a property tax protest.
The hearing evidence will not always provide you with enough information to lower your property taxes, but acquiring the evidence is free of charge, and you won’t know how helpful it is unless you protest.
Assessed property values are dependent on several factors that can change each year. For this reason, it is in your best interest to file an appeal because it gives you an opportunity to potentially lower your property taxes. No matter what the result of your protest is, you can always try the following year.
Looking to work with a property tax reduction firm? NTPTS helps Dallas-Fort Worth homeowners reduce their property taxes. We operate on contingency-based fees, meaning you only pay us if we achieve a reduction for you. Contact us for more information on our services.