Welcome to Howard County Appraisal District!

 

OPEN LETTER FROM PATRICIA DAVIS

CHIEF APPRAISER OF HOWARD COUNTY

Board of Directors of Howard CAD hired me September 1, as Chief Appraiser to continue the progress of the Howard County Appraisal District in meeting the state requirements mandated by law. I look forward to working with the people of Howard County and surrounding areas.

Texas Law requires appraisal districts in the State of Texas to follow specific laws and rules to help ensure fairness and equality. Failure to comply with the Methods and Procedures audit and the Property Value Study will result in bringing to the public attention property laws not met. Requirements to meet those standards impact local school district funding from the State of Texas. Local schools may lose state funds due to appraisal districts not meeting the requirements. Schools need the maximum funding from the State of Texas to do this, the CAD must meet the criteria. Year 2021 the CAD concentrated on categories such as single-family residences, commercial and rural land. The minimum requirement is 95% of market values. The values adjusted to current sales prices after inspection by staff appraisers.

Appraisers use mass appraisal like appraisals done when purchasing a home, only on a mass scale. Similar houses for similar structures and condition using statistical methodology to determine fair market value to all properties. Homes as well as commercial property similarly classed based on quality of construction, then depreciated on current condition. The appraisers educated on the process and make their own decision through an outside observation of the property. If the property owner feels the property is poorly maintained on the inside, it may result in an overestimate of value.

The property owner should file a notice of protest with the appraisal district which will protect their right to appeal. Property owner evidence of value would be helpful when included with the protest to assist in the appeal. Property owners may file the protest online during the protest season. Typical protest season is normally May 1 thru May 30. In person or phone discussions may be used to share information from both parties to attempt a resolution of appropriate value. The property owner has a right to appear before the Appraisal Review Board, a group of local citizens who listen to the evidence will decide regarding the value. The property may appeal the decision to district court or to an arbitration hearing. Instructions included with the final information mailed to the property owner by the ARB after the hearing.

Howard County Appraisal District wants to work with property owners to ensure taxes are fairly and equally assessed. Please feel free to express your thoughts or concerns to pdavis@howardcad.org. I welcome all comments.

FAQ

  • How do I file a protest if I think I couldn’t sell my property for the amount appraised? Within 30 days of the sending of the appraisal notice, the taxpayer should fill out the form that is enclosed in the notice of protest and mail, email, or fax the form to the appraisal district along with any evidence of value that they have.  This protects the taxpayer’s right to continue the appeal.
  • How does an appeal work? Initially, the appraisers of the district will discuss the value issue with you and share sales information of similar properties.  They will go over the information to ensure that the information the district has is correct.  If the taxpayer has evidence such as a recent closing statement, estimates of cost to repair major issues, or pictures of interior problems with the property, those things will be considered by the appraiser and an adjustment to value may be offered.  If a settlement number is offered and accepted, then the appeal is over and paperwork is signed by both parties.
  • An appeal sounds difficult. Should I be afraid?  No, the process is very easy and we are working hard to be cordial and respectful.  There is nothing to fear with either the informal appeal with a staff person or the formal hearing before the Appraisal Review Board.
  • Do I have the right to see the evidence that the appraisal district will present? Yes, by requesting that information before the hearing date, you will be provided a copy of the evidence that the district will present to the ARB.
  • Do I need a lawyer or agent? It is not necessary to have a lawyer or agent.  The discussions are informal.  The staff of the district is not going to use anything tricky or unethical to “win” their argument.  Our goal is to complete the discussion with a realistic market value on all property.
  • Why does property have to be valued at its selling price? Texas is a “market value” state meaning that in our constitution and in law, the standard for appraisal is what a property would sell for if offered on the market.  The appraisal process simply levels the playing field for all taxpayers in the community having each property owner pay based on what they own.  The tax units each set a tax rate based on their needs for revenue to supply education, police protection, water, streets, and other services to the people they serve.  The equality of taxation is also mandated by the courts in the distribution of funds for public education.
  • Why are property taxes so high? The decision by state government to rely on sales taxes and property taxes as the primary sources of revenue cause both of those tax amounts to be high.  The majority of states have an income tax to help with the state tax burden but Texas has made the decision to raise revenues from other sources instead of income and so those taxes are burdensome.
  • How can I get my taxes down? The taxpayer should be sure that they are receiving all legal benefits to which they are entitled.  All persons who own their home are entitled to a homestead exemption.  That provides discounts to homeowners.  Also, persons who are over 65 years of age or those persons who are disabled under social security regulations may apply for additional exemptions.  Disabled veterans also receive discounts from the market value of their property.  And finally, an annual review of the proposed value is important to ensure that it is in line with actual selling prices.

Within this site you will find general information about the District and the ad valorem property tax system in Texas, as well as information regarding specific properties within the district. Howard County Appraisal District is responsible for appraising all real and business personal property within Howard County. The district appraises property according to the Texas Property Tax Code and the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practices (USPAP).

Howard County Appraisal District is responsible for the fair market appraisal of properties within each of the following taxing entities. Additional responsibilities include change of address and public information requests.

Thanks for visiting with us and we hope you’ll find all the information you need right here on the site, but please don’t hesitate to email, call or come by – we’re here to help!

 

Our mission is to provide accurate property assessments to facilitate the local funding for our county, schools, cities, and other districts that derive budgets and other operating expenses from local property values.

Some Property Owners Will be Receiving A Request For Current
Agricultural Applications To Be Filed With The Appraisal District:
Some property owners will be receiving a letter from the Howard County Appraisal District requesting a current application for 1-D-1 (Open Space) Agricultural Use Appraisal.
The Appraisal District is in the process of updating its records and needs to obtain the most current information on these properties in order to be in compliance with State requirements regarding these forms. We apologize for any inconvenience that this may cause our property owners and would like to insure everyone that the Appraisal District staff will be available to assist with questions or concerns regarding the reapplication process. Please do not hesitate to contact our office at (432) 263-8301 or come by 315 Main St, Big Spring, TX 79720.  It is our goal to make this process as simple as possible for those property owners affected by this request.

IF YOU HAVE RECEIVED A FORM IN THE MAIL ASKING THAT YOU PAY A FEE FOR THE FILING OF YOUR “HOMESTEAD DESIGNATION”, PLEASE CALL US FIRST. THE LETTER IS NOT FROM OUR OFFICE AND DOES NOT RELATE TO YOUR HOMESTEAD EXEMPTION. YOU DO NOT NEED TO PAY A FEE TO OBTAIN A HOMESTEAD EXEMPTION!

                

 

County Taxing Entities:
Howard County
Borden Independent School District
Sands Independent School District
Big Spring Independent School District
Coahoma Independent School District
Forsan Independent School District
Stanton Independent School District
City of Coahoma
City of Forsan
City of Big Spring
Howard County Junior College District
Permian Basin Water Conservation District