Texas Property Tax Glossary

Property Taxes 101

Agent / Advocate – A property owner can choose to appoint an agent or advocate to represent the interests related to property tax matters on their behalf. 

Appraisal Review Board (ARB) – An independent body of citizens living within the county authorized to resolve disputes between taxpayers and their appraisal district. 

Appraised Value – The assessed value of a property. 

Appraisal District – Responsible for appraising all property within its district. 

Delinquent – Unpaid property tax. 

Effective Tax Rate – The average rate at which an individual or a corporation is taxed. 

Exemption – A portion of your property’s value that you do not pay taxes on. 

Formal Hearing –  If an Informal Hearing does not reach a satisfactory outcome, a formal hearing can be scheduled. Homeowners or their agent will present their case to the Appraisal Review Board alongside the appraisal district’s representative. After hearing and considering the evidence, the ARB will make a decision on the value of your home. 

Homestead – The property in which a property owner resides beginning Jan 1st. 

Homestead Cap – Limits how much a property’s assessed value can increase year to year on a homestead. 

Homestead Exemption – A provision that protects homeowners from creditors following a death or the declaration of bankruptcy. A homestead exemption can also provide ongoing property tax relief by removing a portion of your home’s assessed value from taxation. 

Informal Hearing – Most appraisal districts provide what is called an informal meeting where you can sit down one on one with an appraiser and discuss the value of your home. 

Lien – A right to keep possession of property belonging to another person until a debt is paid. 

Market Value – An assessment of what a property would sell for based on the features of the property, the current real estate market, and what comparable properties have sold for. 

Protest / Appeal – A property owner’s right to file a protest if they disagree with an action of the chief appraiser, appraisal district or appraisal review board that applies to or adversely affects the property owner. Most property tax protests relate to the market value determined by the appraisal district. 

Nov 16th 2020

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