Property Tax Basics

Property taxes are local taxes. The CAD, central appraisal district, determines the market and taxable value of all taxable property. Your value, and all other values, are sent to the taxing entities that have the right to tax your property. In Tarrant County there were 58 taxing entities. Examples of taxing entities in Tarrant County are Tarrant County Tax Assessor; local school district like Arlington School District; county hospital and college districts, and about 55 more. The CAD list or tax roll is added up. The sum is multiplied by last year's tax rate to determine an estimate of income for the taxing entity. If that is not enough, and it usually is not, then the tax rate is increased to generate more cash to spend. Texas law governs how the process works. You can play an effective role in the process if you know your rights, understand the remedies available to you, and fulfill your responsibilities.

Property taxes are based on the value of the property. For example, the property tax on a vacant lot valued at $10,000 is ten times as much as one valued at $1,000.

The right to protest your property's value to the appraisal review board is the most important right you have as a taxpayer. You may protest if you disagree with any adverse actions the appraisal district has taken on your property.

You may discuss your concerns about your property value, exemptions, and special appraisal in a hearing with an impartial panel of your fellow citizens, called an appraisal review board (ARB). Prior to the ARB hearing, most appraisal districts informally review your protest with you to try to solve problems. Check with your CAD for details.

How do you exercise the Right to Protest?
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