Here’s the net-net of the proposed Republican plan to “lower” our taxes. Mortgage interest deductions would be capped at mortgages $500,000 or less (half the current $1 million) for primary residences. Mortgage interest deductions for second homes would simply vanish. You may be thinking this doesn’t sound bad and you may be mostly right.  While I suspect the $500,000-plus market is relatively smaller than the sub-$500,000 market, the rub may be with the second home deduction.  After all, how many soon-to-be retirees have a $400,000 primary residence and a $250,000 second home?



Texas rises to the top again — this time, when it comes to high taxes.  According to a new study by WalletHub, Texas ranks sixth-highest for real estate taxes in the country. It’s no wonder then, that more than 60 tax-related bills sit before the Texas legislature now.

Worth noting: the WalletHub study cites Republican states as having lower overall property taxes when compared to their blue counterparts. So it comes as no surprise that much of the legislation aimed at decreasing Texans’ property tax burden originates from Republicans.


Dallas ISD trustees failed Thursday to get a supermajority to agree to place a 13-cents property tax increase on the November ballot. (Photo by Erik Hersman/Flickr)

Dallas ISD trustees failed Thursday to get a supermajority to agree to place a 13-cents property tax increase on the November ballot. (Photo by Erik Hersman/Flickr)

Since I write for a real estate publication, I get the, uh, benefit of hearing a lot about property taxes and how people feel about them.

It’s because of that I can feel pretty confident when I say that this may not have been the year to try a 13-cent property tax increase, even if Dallas ISD has one of the lowest rates in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.

Now, my reasons for saying that are completely different than some of the trustees who voted against the tax last night, and which you can read about here, here and here. But for now, let me say this: We cannot fund pre-K expansion and two years of college on eight campuses without some kind of investment. I still absolutely think that every single thing on the original measure was important and worthy of the extra taxation, and if I had been allowed, I would’ve voted for all three measures.


property tax

Sponsored By Texas Tax Protest.

Texas Tax Protest is a property tax consulting company which reduces the property tax burden home owners and commercial property owners pay on their properties.

Created By BlankSlate

Do you own a home or commercial property in the D-FW area? Get ready for sticker shock when you receive your 2016 property tax appraisal notice – and learn how you can fight back.

Property Taxes Are Skyrocketing

Property values have soared in the past year, driving up tax appraisals with staggering increases and causing gasps across the Metroplex as homeowners open their mail. The combination of high demand and low inventory is creating a hot real estate market in many parts of Texas, which appraisal districts are using as justification to significantly raise tax appraisals.

14 Percent Increase in Tarrant County

Record-breaking property tax increases may be in store for 2016. One of the first counties to release property tax appraisal notices this year was the Tarrant Appraisal District. According to TAD, residential property values have increased a whopping 14 percent in the past 12 months.

Owners of multifamily properties could expect an even larger increase due to high rental rates and low vacancy. Apartment owners may see their property taxes rise by 20 percent or more!

How to Fight Back: Your Right to Appeal

As a property owner, you have the right to challenge your taxes to keep them low and manageable. You can file an appeal, compile evidence, and present your case to the appraisal district in order to change their valuation of your property.

Many counties in Texas are sending out property tax appraisal notices right now. Under state law, you have until May 31st to file a tax protest. You can prepare the case yourself, or hire a professional to fight on your behalf.

Call in the Experts: Hire Texas Tax Protest

Hiring a tax professional is the easiest and most direct way to appeal your taxes – and it can be the most effective. At Texas Tax Protest, our professionals build data models, review neighborhood statistics, and have expert knowledge of the appeals process.

We spend time researching the evidence in order to present a case that is accurate, effective, and organized. We win new cases about 80 percent of the time, compared to around 25  percent for homeowners who protest their cases on their own.

patrick melton of texas property tax

Patrick Melton

2016: A Critical Year to Challenge Your Taxes

The best time to appeal your taxes is right now. According to Patrick Melton of Texas Tax Protest on WFAA News 8:

2016 is “a critical year to fight… Values are up. If you fight them now, it could prevent them from compounding over time and increasing to an unbearable level.”

Watch News 8’s video segment on skyrocketing property taxes, and listen to Melton explain how to fight your tax assessment – and why you should.

Contact Us Today for a Free Property Review

By challenging property tax values, the average homeowner can save hundreds to thousands of dollars – not just this year, but for years to come. Get a free property review from Texas Tax Protest, and discover your potential tax savings. Contact us online or by calling  214-960-5590.

The deadline is fast approaching – don’t miss this opportunity. Assert your right to fight!

Dallas Land Use

The Productive Land Use Series will focus on annual property tax revenue at the neighborhood level. Since land is the city’s primary resource, this series will delve into how we are using our land and if we can use it more efficiently. For part 1, click here.

In the previous post, we looked at various types of housing throughout Dallas and evaluated the property tax revenue per acre collected every year in order to analyze a neighborhood’s financial contribution to city operations. Using a well-maintained, single-family neighborhood as our standard, $30,000 collected per acre annually is our baseline to which we judge the financial performance of our land use.

As we look at the productivity of our neighborhoods, we see that the desirability of an area reflects positively in property tax return for the city. More often than not, the attractiveness of a neighborhood is related to the commercial amenities located in the vicinity of the residents. These third places, where people work and play, not only help define the community, but also contribute to the functioning of our city by paying property tax and sales tax.

We should expect higher revenue from our commercial spaces because they see more activity than our homes. From entertainment to employment, commercial spaces bring people together to spend money. As important cogs in our economy, they must also pay their share for the municipal services they require.

First, let’s take a look at the most common commercial space in our city:


Don't Mess with Taxes

Wallet Hub did a very interesting analysis when it comes to the various tax systems employed by individual states in the nation. Come to find out, Texas’ tax system, which relies heavily on property taxes to fund our government services, is rated as one of the most unfair tax systems. Of course, after our recent spate of good fortune in the housing market, it’ll be interesting to see how much homeowners are going to end up paying in 2015. And what about all of the capital gains folks are going to have to pay on those record-breaking sales?

Next April is going to hurt, that’s for sure.

Jump to see the how Texas measured up:



It’s Tax Day, and while you’re frantically double checking your forms to make sure you got every single deduction, don’t forget that there are a slew of tax benefits to being a homeowner. We scoured the IRS site and the web to compile this list of deductions many homeowners can claim. For a more exhaustive list, check out this “Taxopedia” from Kiplingers.

For a the top 10 deductions for homeowners, jump!


Rob Wheelock headshotYou have a few more days to protest your property taxes, then it’s all over for another year. While he sifts through the late-comers who decide they need a pro to help them lower property values before the May 31 deadline, I asked Rob Wheelock to give us the low down on  property tax rates across North Texas. I knew that life in the Park Cities was a pretty good deal — low taxes and great schools. No wonder those property values barely dip! Live in Preston Hollow, pay .79700 per $100 valuation, and oh yes, send your kids to private school. Another shocker: Irving FCD1 has the highest property tax rate. No wonder Tony Romo is moving to North Dallas!

PS: One of my North Dallas properties got a smidgen of an increase, but I am sending it to Rob to nip right in the bud!

Here is the North Texas property tax rate low down, 4 days and counting ’till you can protest no more:

“There are several entities that make up the total property tax rate depending upon where you live.  Everyone in Dallas County pays County and School Equalization at the 2012 rate of .253037% and Parkland Hospital and Dallas County Community College District at the 2012 rate of .390375% for a combined total of 0.643412%, but then there’s City and School taxes plus a few Special Districts.  Those vary, and the difference can be significant.  To give you an idea, I’ve highlighted a few below;


City Estimated Tax Rate 2013




Highland Park




University Park



School Estimated Tax Rate 2013




Highland Park




University Park


*Plano is in Collin County

As you can see, the Park Cities enjoy a lower rate on both city and school taxes than other neighborhoods.  Highland Park has the lowest city tax rate in the County, but property values are among the highest.  Wylie has the highest city rate at 0.8889, with Lancaster and Cockrell Hill close behind.

On School taxes, again Highland Park ISD has the lowest rate in the County at 1.1342, with Grand Prairie and Irving having the highest school tax rate at 1.465.

So what’s all that really mean?  Let’s take a look at a home valued at $1,200,000.  Assuming the property is your Homestead (which gives you a 20% reduction), if it was in Preston Hollow or anywhere in Dallas ISD you would be paying $26,212.48 in property taxes.  In University Park your tax bill would be $19,735.39 and in Highland Park $19,174.27.  In Plano you’d be looking at paying $22,384.71.

The highest tax rate in Dallas County belongs to property owners in the Irving area that are part of the Dallas County Flood Control District #1.  Their total rate is a whopping 5.757012.  That same $1,200,000 home owner in this area would be paying $55,267.31.  Remind me not to move into that neighborhood!

(Editor’s note: Geeze Louise!)

On a different subject, homeowners that are over 65 and are considering downsizing need to remember to transfer their Over 65 Homestead Exemption from their old home to the new one.  It’s something I’ve seen several people forget and could cost you thousands of dollars.  When you turn 65 your school taxes basically freeze at that dollar amount, as long as you don’t make improvement to the property. When you move, the percentage savings can transfer to the new property, but only if you request it.

Property taxes are high in Texas, but remember, we don’t have a State income tax.”

(Editor’s note: yeah, yeah yeah.)

If you have any other property tax questions or would like to have your property taxes monitored each year, please call me at 214-212-6910 or contact me at .  For more information visit