DALLAS — In 2021, Chandler Crouch's real estate agency, Chandler Crouch Realtors, helped 22,000 North Texas homeowners protest their property tax values.
Crouch said they had a success rate of about 90%.
“Everyone should protest every single year, for a few reasons," Crouch said. "Number one, you just don’t have anything to lose.”
Crouch said people often hesitate to protest their property tax appraisal notices because they fear they'll be put on some sort of blacklist or that it will hurt their property value. He said there are laws in place to prevent that sort of thing and that local governments expect appeals.
WFAA reached out to Dallas, Tarrant, Collin and Denton Counties for an update on their notices. Tarrant and Collin County, the North Texas county with the highest average property tax value, have not responded.
Dallas County, though closed for the holiday weekend, confirmed that notices would be mailed out Friday and that some electronic notices were already available.
Denton County confirmed that first batch of the 350,000 notices that will be sent, will be mailed out Monday. The county also confirmed it expects about 120,000 protests and even updates its online portal to report them.
Crouch said, when clients come to him, his first step is to provide online resources and see if clients who have and escrow shortage can arrange to pay a lower monthly payment.
“A lot of times, you can just call your mortgage company and ask them if you can spread out that escrow shortage over a two-year period instead of that default one-year period," Crouch said.
For homeowners looking to dispute the the appraisal amount, the first step is to inform the appraisal district of your intent to protest within by the district's deadline.
“The easiest way to do that is take the notice you get in the mail, turn it over and fill out the backside of it," Crouch said.
He said to make sure you check the boxes for both the market value protest and the unequal protest.
Once you do that, you'll be given a hearing date, which he described as being the deadline to make your case to bring your tax appraisal value down.
“Ask the appraisal district for the evidence that they’re using against you that has justified an increase in your value," Crouch said. "You can take that evidence and do the work that they can’t do, and that’s just drive by the houses and look to see if those houses actually compare to yours."
Crouch said two helpful things to do to make your case are to get market data from a local realtor about the sales from homes in your area that are similar to yours from January 1, 2021 to March 31, 2022. Also, document anything about your home that would take away from value, like foundation issues and broken windows.
“Take those photographs, send them in and get repair estimates from contractors," Crouch said. "They may give you a dollar-for-dollar
“They may give you a dollar-for-dollar reduction based on the repair estimate of that issue."
He says, it's always worth a shot to keep some dollars in your wallet.