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Protested My Property Taxes Again. Still Worth It!

Last year, my appraisal district tried to raise the appraised, taxable value of my home from $259,500 to $315,000 (it would have been capped at $286,000 though).  I e-filed a protest, turned down their $280,000 counter offer, and then went to the formal appraisal board meeting.  They went with the value of $262,000 thanks to the appraiser suggesting it to the board.

2015 Property Tax Appraisal Results

Well, this year they tried to raise the $262,000 to $348,000 (tax capped at $289,000).  The thing is, I was pretty sure that the value had increased quite a bit, but not to $348,000.  I e-file protested the market value, not the appraised, taxable value that they had sent me.

I didn’t hear back about my protest for 6 months.  Then I received a letter saying that I had an informal meeting with an appraiser at the very beginning of August.  I detested my formal appraisal board experience last year, so I was hoping an informal meeting with an appraiser could be way better…

Way Easier than Last Year

I was right!  Before the meeting, I asked a real estate agent friend/pet sitting client to run the numbers for me.  He sent me a comparable market analysis for my home and my rent house.  I just took copies of those into the meeting with me.

My numbers and the appraiser’s numbers matched up closely, and she brought the market value of our home down from $348,000 to $306,000.  We will still be taxed at $289,000 for this year (so there was a $27,000 increase anyway…), but I was really happy for the realistic value result.

For our rent house, they tried to take it from $118,000 to $136,000, but she again agreed with my numbers and stuck with $122,000.  That was the $400 win since there is no cap on non-homesteads here.

Overall, our property taxes increased by $1200-$1500 this year, BUT it was going to be around $1900, so I consider this a win of sorts.  🙂  I really wish we only had new values appraised every 2-3 years, but I guess I need to get used to this annual event…

Comparable Market Analyses for the Win

If you ever need to protest your property tax home value, make a real estate friend or see how much it would cost otherwise to get a comparable market analysis done for you.  It makes the process so much easier since the numbers of what you could sell for are just right there.  If you need to protest because of property damage or something else, then take pictures too.

How did this year’s appraisal go for you?



FYI:  I worked at a dead end cubicle job from 2005-2011 for about $30,000 per year.  I went self-employed in July 2011 and make between $70,000-$90,000 through blogging, professional pet sitting, hubby's reffing, and our rental home.  If you’d like to start your own site (link to my free step-by-step guide), I highly suggest checking out Bluehost (my referral link with a nice discount for you, PLUS a free custom header banner from me!).  Please contact me any time at budgetingfunstuff*at*gmail*dot*com with questions or just to brainstorm! I’d love to help!
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4 thoughts on “Protested My Property Taxes Again. Still Worth It!

  1. Good for you. Our valuations have been pretty close to market conditions so I’ve yet to file a protest. Hopefully that stays true as the whole process just sounds like a hassle.

  2. I briefly considered protesting our increase but with new construction around us, and seeing some of the recent comps, I realize that I probably won’t get anywhere. I am going to keep on top of it, though, since I suspect it’ll keep being raised as new construction is completed and I’m sure it won’t all be a realistic increase. I did wonder if I had to get comps from someone who’s actually in real estate or if we could do our own research.

  3. I don’t understand how you’re pulling this off. Hereabouts, you have to argue that they’ve mis-appraised your house vis-a-vis the valuation of the houses around you. If the house across the street and the one down the block have similarly jacked-up valuations, you don’t have a proverbial leg to stand on. Also…gosh. Where does the TIME come from to do battle with a bureaucracy? Talk about time sucks! 😀

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