The time has come for the Dallas Central Appraisal District to send out new appraisal district value statements to its residents. In fact, all of North Texas should be receiving statements in the next week. It is important to note that the District is not required to send a paper notice, so if you fail to find yours in your mailbox, go to www.DCAD.org and look it up.
What should you expect to see this year? Steve Brown of the Dallas Morning News is predicting Dallasites see an 8 percent rise in value. And while no one feels like it is a fair time to raising our taxes given that we are in the midst of a global pandemic, it is important to remember that this is the value as of January 1, 2020. So, while Covid-19 might not play a major factor in values this year, it might play a role in the 2021 numbers.
I am by no means a tax attorney, however, I would highly recommend everyone protest their tax values. The formula the tax district uses is as follows:
Market Value= (Market Adjustment X Replacement Cost New)-Depreciation) + Land Value
This computer-generated value is spit out and sent out to the homeowner without as much as a second glance to consider in existential factors. Protesting your value is simply asking the appraisal district to take a look at your property outside of this formula.
Here are some tips for your protest:
1. When you look your house up on DCAD, you will find square footage and bed/baths, etc., however, don’t forget to look at the bottom to see if you have any additional improvements listed that shouldn’t be there. You are taxed on these extras also and do not want to be paying for a non-existent pool or garage.
2. When you protest, be prepared to take pictures of the inside and outside of your home. Have your real estate agent help you find comparable homes in the neighborhood and gather as much imagery as you can on these as well.
3. Protest is not just about square footage but also about condition. For example, as many of you know, our home was destroyed by a 2019 tornado, and although we technically have a pool, it is hardly usable. I will be protesting this as a taxable asset.
4. Once you receive your hearing date, know that you have the right to schedule one before this date. I am guessing automated assignments will be made all the way into August and September at this point. You have the right to protest in person, however, they will prefer a phone or video call this year. I would opt for video chat, so you can show pictures. I also would ask for the evidence that they have for your review.
5. The Dallas Central Appraisal District is required to give you at least 14 day’s notice before your hearing. Be proactive and be prepared!
Homeowners have until June 15, 2020, however, get it done sooner rather than later so that it is as quick and painless as possible. You can file online or send it in the old-fashioned way which is my preference, so I can include pictures and detailed descriptions of my protest. I always suggest keeping a copy of everything.
Have more questions? Check out www.propertytax.io which a great resource is if you have questions about property tax protests. It also gives you the value of what they think your home is worth whether you want to go through the process yourself or hire them to help.
As always, I am also here to help and am only a phone call, text, or email away.