Looking for referrals from those who have done a (successful) tax reassessment in the greater Dallas Area.
Commercial or residential?
We use a local company called Resolute Property Tax Solutions for a handful of our properties. The rest I am still handling myself. They charge a % of the overall tax savings on a contingency basis - so if they don't save you any money, they don't get paid.
Thanks Andy I will check them out.
@Tony Karns I used Resolute this past year. Prior to that I did all my tax protests myself. Only got 1 of 8 properties reduced. To be fair, I had aggressively protested in prior years, and Dallas County has gotten very difficult to get any leniency out of.
Bottom line, there is no magic to it. If you have the time, I'd probably just do it yourself. If you have a HUD from the last couple years, that will pretty much guarantee they will lower it to the purchase price at least.
So Andrew in the previous years did you get any relief? Was the relief you got with Resolute better than what you could have gotten yourself?
I looked back at our 2017 numbers, they did my personal house and 3 rentals for me. Just looking at the rentals, they saved me $1200 in taxes for 2017. 1 house lowered from a tax value of $183k to $153k, one from $137k to $130k and the other from $165k to $150k. 1 house in each of the major counties (Dallas, Tarrant and Denton).
That first one brought half the savings and did have legitimate issues. I did my part: went out to the house (all of them) and took pictures of all issues - this one in particular had a lot of sheet rock cracks and we eventually figured out there was a break in the sewer line causing the house to lift in the middle...sent any plumbing and sheetrock repair estimates as well to the company to use.
That is the trick now: you won't win on sales comps, so you have to sell the poor condition of the house.
As Andrew mentioned, if you follow the BRRRR stratedy, you are buying heavily discounted hopefully and that is the low hanging fruit that you should protest yourself, normally online - present your closing statement and any pics or repair estimate and get it lowered to purchase price. Though I will say that on my 2 new Dallas county houses last year, although they lowered the value, they would not match purchase. I had to go in front of the ARB and they decided that because I bought off-market directly from the sellers, it was not arms-length (bull$%^&).
My plan is to hand over the houses after a few years of protesting ourselves - get the low-hanging fruit and then left the company take over. We have a big enough portfolio now that it takes a ton of time and work to deal with the process...
Andy, thanks for sharing your insights on how to get this done. So I am doing a house hack. I did not buy at the lowest there is ,but I do believe that I got a deal at less than $100 per sqft. The property is in not so good conditions and needs some significant work( Just had a copper waterline break just this last week.) Do you homestead your home? Are in of your properties Duplexes?
No duplexes (yet). Absolutely homestead it - that will prevent greater than 10% value increases in future years. As long as you owned the property BEFORE January 1, 2018, you can get it homesteaded for 2018.
At a minimum you should get your value lowered to purchase price.
I am lost - your profile says Florida - are you in TX now?
@Tony Karns I don't think the big property tax protest firms will do a better job than you can do yourself. It's really a question of if you have the time. I decided this year I did not want to mess with it as I had already gotten assessed values down as far as I realistically could.
I agree with @Andy Webb that the best thing to do is try to get the condition of the house downgraded by documenting work needed.
I have found that normally the big jumps happen about every 3 years. That is basically how often an actual appraiser looks at a valuation in Texas. Those are really the times when it is most worth it.
Also remember the challenges must be done in a certain time frame.
@Andy Webb, I am moving to Dallas in February. I bought the duplex last year. I plan on Homestead and also apply veteran tax benefits also.
@Andy Herrig, So I don't have the time and on the ground knowledge to be able to get it done efficiently myself this year, so I plan to outsource it. I have all the stuff that was reported on the inspection report that should make a difference in the re-assessment. Fingers crossed
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