The Howard County Appraisal District mailed property valuations last week to people who have an increase in their property value. If taxpayers disagree with the value listed on the notice, they have the right to appeal that notice but must file the protest within 30 days of the sending of the appraisal notice.
“There is a document in the information that comes out called a notice of protest. If a person feels like - ‘I couldn’t sell my house for this. I have all these issues with my home.’ Then they should file that notice of protest," said HCAD Interim Chief Appraiser Richard Petree.
Petree went on to say that by filing the Notice of Protest - either in person or online - the taxpayer’s right to continue the appeal is protected.
"So, they come in. They talk to an appraiser at our office. They visit back and forth. We tell them what sold in their area, tell them why we think the value is what it is. They share with us any information [concerning the property]. [If] we feel they have good evidence, we’ll make an adjustment appropriately," said Petree.
Evidence to support the taxpayer's claim can include a recent closing statement, estimates for repairs, or pictures of interior problems with the property. If a settlement number is offered and accepted then the appeal is over and both parties sign paperwork.
If an agreement cannot be reached, then the taxpayer has a right to appear before the Appraisal Review Board, a group of local citizens who listen to the evidence and make a decision regarding the value. This decision can be appealed to the district court or to an arbitration hearing.
The deadline to file a protest is June 21st.
According to an open letter from Petree posted to the HCAD website, the appraisal district wants to work with the taxpayers of Howard County to ensure that taxes are fairly and equally assessed. If you have any concerns or comments, you can contact Richard Petree by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also find more information about HCAD at: www.howardcad.org