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Central Texas Appraisal Districts warn property values will increase this year

McLennan County's chief appraiser doesn't want residents to be shell-shocked when they see property values increase more than usual.

WACO, Texas — Property values across the state of Texas are rising in 2022. In Bell County, the average will increase around 25 percent, whereas in McLennan County it will be around 30 percent. 

McLennan County Chief Appraiser Joe Bobbitt said that he wants one thing to be clear. “If the market goes up we have to follow it," he said. "A lot of people just assume we are increasing the values to increase the budget for and the revenues for the schools and the tax entities."

Bobbitt is encouraging residents to protest their appraisals if they think they are incorrect. 

Resident have until Monday, May 16 to do so. You can either file online or in person by filling out the back of your appraisal form. He says the easiest way to protest is by filling out the online form. 

“If they look at the value and says there is no way, then by all means come in and talk to us but they need to see what things are selling for because if you bought your house five years ago, the market is completely different.”

Waco will see a 29 percent increase on average, while Crawford will see as high as 47 percent on average. The school district with the lowest increase in McLennan County is Midway at 23 percent. 

Bobbitt says that step one should be to protest the appraisal if you think that it is incorrect but that many residents who are unhappy should follow up with government entities getting tax money such as school districts, community colleges, water districts and general budget meetings. 

"They need to talk to the tax entities," he said. "What we always hear is we have 15,000 people come into protest but then we only five people show up to the school board meeting or the counties budget meeting, somewhere along the way that message is getting lost.” 

He adds that other appraisers are trying to meet with legislators to address the surge, noting that the current tax system wasn't designed to keep up with this kind of market. 

A website will release the new tax rates on Aug. 7. 

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