Hold onto your wallets, Texas homeowners, because things are looking up on the property tax front!
We partnered with Gill, Denson & Company on this article to bring you the important updates. Here’s a quick rundown of the recent law changes in 2023 that just might put some extra change in your pockets this year:
Homestead Exemption Increase
The standard $40,000 homestead exemption more than doubled to $100,000 with Senate Bill 2 (SB2). That’s an average of savings of $681 in school tax (Senate Research Center, Bill Analysis). Homeowners aged 65 or older or disabled will have their capped tax payments reduced to reflect this change. They will now see future benefits automatically without the need to wait for separate constitutional amendments. In addition, local taxing units may not reduce or repeal an optional homestead exemption from 2022 until after the 2027 tax year.
School Tax Slimdown
SB2 also gave school district maintenance and operation (M&O) rates a 10.7-cent reduction for the 2023-2024 school year. That means for every $100 your property is worth, you’ll pay 10.7 cents less in school taxes.
Appraisal Cap Pilot Program
Another key change from SB2 implements an appraisal cap pilot program designed to restrict appraised value increases of non-homestead real property valued at $5 million or less. This program keeps their taxable value increases capped at 20% year over year, putting a stop to skyrocketing assessments until 2026.
Other Key Property Tax Law Changes
- Under SB2, counties with populations over 75,000 gain three new elected appraisal board members for greater accountability to property owners in their decisions.
- House Bill 1228 (HB1228) ensures property owners can now access appraisal info electronically and file binding arbitration online for faster results without a fee.
- Senate Bill 2355 (SB2355) shifts binding arbitration applications from appraisal districts to the Comptroller’s office and enables electronic filing.
- House Bill 2488 (HB2488) establishes a “clear and convincing evidence” burden of proof for appraisal review boards in certain property tax appeals filed under Chapter 42.
- House Bill 796 (HB796) mandates chief appraisers to create a publicly accessible online protest hearing database by October 1 of each year that contains vital details for transparency in property tax protests.
- House Bill 4101 (HB4101) authorizes property owners to use binding arbitration to ensure appraisal boards and chief appraisers follow their own procedures, creating a fairer process. Applicable to protests filed on or after January 1, 2024.
- House Bill 1285 (HB1285) broadens taxpayer liaison officers’ duties to handle more property owner complaints unrelated to property appraisals and to publicize appraisal board openings.
- House Bill 2121 (HB2121) eliminates notarization requirements for business personal property renditions valued at $150,000 or less, applying to tax years as of January 1, 2024.
Should I Still Protest My Value?
Absolutely! While these recent changes to the property tax laws provide a benefit to your bottom line, protesting is still a valuable tool to lower your property taxes. Many property owners are overtaxed due to the mass appraisal methods districts use to value properties.
We partnered with Gill, Denson & Company, a firm that protests property values for property owners, to offer our clients and readers an exclusive discount to utilize their service. They saved money for 83% of their clients last year.
Use our exclusive promo code RESIDENTREALTY for a discounted 25% contingency fee. You will only pay them if they actually reduce your property taxes. Redeem it by visiting their website, navigating to the ‘Get Started’ page and entering our promo code during the sign-up process.