Frequently Asked Questions

Who sets my property tax rates?

Texas does not have a state property tax, which means your property tax rates are set by local elected officials. Once properties are appraised as of January 1 every year, local governments use that information to set tax rates, which typically occurs in September or October.

Texas law requires the following rules to apply to all property taxes: 1) All taxes must be equal and uniform, 2) Taxation must be based on the property's January 1st market value, 3) Property must be taxable unless indicated by the federal or state government, 4) Property tax increases must have a reasonable notice, and 5) Every property is only assigned one appraised value.

Where can I find my property’s information?

Information on your property can be found through your local central appraisal district (CAD). To find your local CAD, click here.

A new law passed in 2019 requires central appraisal districts to create pro-taxpayer websites that have information about the factors that affect your bill all in one convenient place.

Depending on your county’s population, the CAD is required to have its website ready by either the 2020 tax year (200,000+ population) or the 2021 tax year (less than 200,000 population).

In the past, taxpayers had to contact each of the individual taxing entities directly to get their tax information.

Why isn’t my county on the list?

If you live in a relatively small county (less than 200,000 population), your CAD likely won’t have its website ready until 2021.

The new law requires “large” counties (200,000+ population) to have their taxpayer websites ready for the 2020 tax year.

However, CADs in “small” counties (less than 200,000 population) aren’t required to have their taxpayer websites until the 2021 tax year.

Please check back as the Local Lookup Tool is updated with new information.

What is the role of a county’s chief appraiser?

A county’s chief appraiser administers the central appraisal district’s functions, including setting the market value of a property.

What is market value?

A property's market value is the amount which a property is likely to sell based on the condition of the home and value of surrounding properties.

What is taxable value?

Taxable value is the market value, minus any homestead cap limitations and tax exemptions (such as a homestead exemption).

What do all these “tax rates” mean?

Local governments are required to tell taxpayers certain information, including a few numbers they have calculated, during the annual budgeting process:

  • Proposed tax rate: This is the tax rate that the local government wants to adopt to fund their budget for the coming year.
  • No-new-revenue rate: This was formerly known as the effective rate. This is the tax rate that would enable the local government to bring in the same amount of revenue as the previous year (not including new construction). If they adopt the no-new-revenue rate, your property taxes due to that entity will be similar to last year. (But remember that your bill is combination of tax rates due to all of the local taxing entities where your property is located.)
  • Voter-approval rate: This rate sets a cap* on how much a local government can increase revenue from the previous year without voter approval. If a local government proposes a tax rate that exceeds the voter-approval rate, it triggers an automatic election. This was formerly known as the rollback rate.

*Allows up to 3.5% increased maintenance and operations (M&O) revenue for cities and counties, with unused rate carryover allowed for three years, or up to 8% increased M&O revenue for junior college districts, hospital districts, and certain small local taxing entities

What do my property taxes pay for?

Property tax revenue is applied to many local services depending on the taxing unit. Commonly, property taxes are used to fund public schools, infrastructure projects, police and fire departments, and other local offices and services.

What is a homestead exemption?

A homestead exemption is a tax break available on a property that is the homeowner's primary household starting from at least January 1 of the appraisal year. Contact your county’s central appraisal district to apply for this and other exemptions.

What is the Texas Property Tax Reform and Transparency Act of 2019, and what did it say?

The Texas Property Tax Reform and Transparency Act of 2019 revolutionized how the public interacts with the taxation process. This includes measures to ensure your voice is heard. Click here to find out more.

I can't attend a public hearing to voice my concern about tax rates that determine my property tax bill. How else can I get involved?

You can get involved by directly providing feedback online in an easy and convenient way by visiting your local central appraisal district website.

Where can I find more information about property appraisal?

The fastest way to learn about property appraisal in your area is by visiting your local central appraisal district website.

Find Your Central Appraisal District