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My visit to DCAD Last Year

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I went on a fact finding at the DCAD this afternoon.  The following is a summary of what I found.


First of all, the experience with the Residential Appraiser went very well.  The best way to handle reducing your appraisal is to visit the DCAD on 3911 Morse Street and talk to one of the appraisers.  Please note: do not go there with an attitude.  It is very counter productive.  If all of the appraisers are like the one I talked with, and you have your information, then you can get your appraisal reduced without going through the protest procedure.  Another note here, if you do go through the protest, they can actually increase your appraisal.  Not likely, but they can.  So have your duck in a row before you go.


The first question I had was “what specific comparables did you use to come up with my appraisal”.  They used “mass appraisal” to determine appraisals so he did not have specific comps for my house (see later).   The district collects detailed information on Robson Ranch sales and somehow come up with typical values.  So I said, you take apples, oranges, watermelons, grapes, pomegranates and average them out.  He actually did not disagree with me.  So the way to lower your appraisal is to take your own comps and use them to lower the value.


I did not give him any information.  After a while he said, lets take a look at your home.  He then proceeded to print out 5 comps for my house, in detail, and offer to lower my value by $21,877.  He gave me what I had asked for at the beginning.  I actually did not go there to lower my property value.  How about that.  I have not accepted his offer, but I still can if I cannot find anything else to lower it.


I followed up with the 9804 Crestridge house that has been on the market over 500 days and is listed for $267,500.  It is 2030 square feet (mine is 1958) and it is on the golf course.  I proposed that my home be valued at $267,500.  I have not gotten a response as of now.


The following are notes:


They will use new construction as comps.


Tarrant County will only allow 2008 closings for comps (The date of the value of property is to be Jan 1 of the year).  But DCAD will also use the first 3 months of this year. 


DCAD does not take into account what is in the homes.  This can be a problem when a home with many upgrades sells, raising the value of your home without all of the upgrades. 


DCAD does group the golf course lots together if possible.  Also Greenbelts. 


I have noted that they are increasing the value of the lots.  I don’t know how they justify that.


Pick up a “Taxpayer’s Rights, Remedies and Responsibilities” at the front desk at DCAD.  It comes from Susan Combs, Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts and tells you how the system is suppose to work.


All property must be taxed equally, so you can use other homes values to lower yours.

In other words, they do not have to be solds.


Values of homes that are for sale and been on the market for a long time may be used.  You do not know what the home may sell for, but you can at least get an upper limit when the house has been for sale a long time.  A good example of this is 9804 Crestridge.  It has sold, not closed, but it was listed for $267,500.  It was first listed May 14,2007.  This is a 2030 square foot, 3 bedroom Milano on the first tee golf course lot.  Interestingly, DCAD has this house at $331,488.  That will change.  I plan to use this house to lower my value more than they offered.


To summarize, it appears that DCAD will treat your fairly.  Don’t do what I did, not take any comps with you.  I was on a fact finding mission and was not looking to reduce by appraisal.



I hope this will give you what you need to have your appraisal lowered.  Let me know if I can assist you futher.


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Please note:  Robson Ranch is a 55+ community, but 20% can be younger provided one resident is at least 40.  No one can be a permanent resident if less than 19.

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