Frequently Asked Questions

Due to the size of Texas compared to surrounding states, we are addressing below common property tax questions that pertain to it. If you have questions concerning property tax issues in other states, please call us.

What fee alternatives are offered by PTA to represent my properties?

PTA will customize its fee structure in accordance with each client’s desire. Most clients prefer either a fixed fee, contingency fee, or a combination of both.

What are the important appeal dates in Texas?

Generally, value notices are mailed around April 15th of each year and the protest deadline is May 15th.  For other important property tax dates, please see our tax calendar. Please call us for other state deadlines.

What types of properties do you represent?

PTA represents all Commercial Real Estate and Business Personal Property.  We are organized so that each consultant can focus on specific property types in specific regions.

Are tax credit properties appraised differently than other multifamily properties?

Yes, in two important ways.  First, the Tax Code requires tax credit properties be appraised using the income approach to value.  Second, the value must be established using restricted rents, not market rents.

What states do you service?

PTA is a regional firm representing properties on a national level. We recognize that many clients own properties nationwide and prefer to work with a single company. Consequently, our office will be responsible for the communication and dissemination of pertinent information. PTA has formed strategic alliances with carefully selected regional firms with expert local jurisdictional knowledge and relationships. Our approach provides both the convenience of a national firm with the needed local expertise.

Are all properties subject to a personal property tax?

No. If the market value of real property is appraised on the basis of rental income, then the personal property may not be separately appraised but will be included in the value of the real property.

What are the steps of the Texas appeal process?

1) File a protest.  
2) Discuss the value informally with appraisal district staff in an attempt to reach an agreement.  
3) Present case to the appraisal review board.  
4) File a lawsuit in district court if not satisfied with the board’s ruling.

What can I do if I missed my protest deadline?

PTA has successfully reduced property values when owners missed the protest deadline. The Tax Code provides for a late protest by January 31st of the following year if three conditions are met, one of which is that the true market value is less than 75% of the appraised market value.

How can I determine whether to file a lawsuit?

For each property PTA presents to the appraisal review board, PTA’s consultants analyze the board’s ruling and discusses with the client the costs and potential tax savings in filing a lawsuit in district court.

Is there a limit on how much property values can be increased?

Yes and No.  Residential homesteads are limited to 10% increases each year yet commercial properties have no such limit.

If I purchase a property, will I be taxed at the full purchase price?

In Texas, the law requires that properties be appraised at fair market value which a purchase generally establishes. More importantly, though, the property must be appraised fairly when compared to similar competing properties. This often results in the property initially being appraised at a lower value than the purchase price.

Why should I hire a professional tax consultant?

The same reason you would hire an accountant: you want a professional who has knowledge of property tax laws, hearing procedures, various appraisal techniques and long term relationships with appraisal district staff.  Over the last 25 years Property Tax Advocates has developed personal relationships with appraisal district staff and built a reputation of professionalism and integrity.

If a property value is reduced through appeal can the Appraisal District increase the value the following year?

Yes.  Texas does not have an appraisal cycle and reappraise each year.

Do I have to pay a fee if you do not reduce my value?

Normally, “No” since the vast majority of our clients prefer compensating us on a contingency fee, based entirely on tax savings.  However, for those clients who prefer to pay a specified fee or a combination of both, a fee will be paid reqardless of the results.

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