County appraisal letters to be sent out Friday

Hunt County – Area residents are beginning to receive preliminary appraisal letters in the mail and Hunt County residents can expect those letters in the next few days.

The Hunt County Appraisal District will begin sending out nearly 65,000 real property notices Friday, with industrial and business personal property accounts being mailed later this month. Residents will have up to 30 days to file an appeal or to speak with an appraiser regarding their property assessment.

All properties must be appraised at 100 percent fair market value as of Jan. 1. Appraised values will be reflected on tax bills that will go out to consumers in October.

County Chief Appraiser Brent South property values have held steady for the most part. Of single family residential notices to be mailed, 70 percent will have either no change or a decrease in value from 2008. The average changed from 2008 to 2009 was between a one and two percent reduction in market value, according to South.

13,000 Hunt County residents appealed their appraisals last year. South says typically about ten percent of all property owners will appeal. He says it's going to be tough to tell how that process is going to play out this year because of the market decline, where in years past those values have increased.

"Here in our part of the country, especially in Hunt County we haven't seen the drastic decrease that the rest of the nation has realized," says South.

"However, people are still listening to the national media and hearing the real estate market on the decline nationwide, and they anticipate that our values are going to follow that trend but that's not necessarily the case."

Some homeowners will also be faced with higher assessed values despite a reduction in market value due to the 10 percent homestead cap laws, according to South.

The annual percentage increase in residential homestead appraisal values is limited to 10 percent for each year since the most recent tax appraisal.

Appeal appointments can be made by contacting the HCAD at 903-454-8540. The deadline to file an appeal in Hunt County is June 15. The deadline for any other county is 30 days from the date the notices are mailed.