The informal hearings for property tax assessment protests started this week for residents of Steiner Ranch. As I have outlined previously, this year Travis Central Appraisal District is experimenting in Steiner Ranch with a new regression analysis system for determining property values (for background information click here, here, here, and here).
Early reports from those who have attended their informal hearings are pretty much what I expected. TCAD is not entertaining arguments that compare one home to 3-5 comparable homes that sold during 2010. They simply state that the regression analysis model does not work that way. Those who can legitimately prove that TCAD has incorrect information about a house are having success (for example, square footage is too high or a non-existant deck shows on their records).
As I have written before, this year residents will most likely have success at the formal hearings in front of the ARB. I would appreciate if you can relay your experiences at both the informal and formal hearings.
As a reminder, you do not need to attend your informal hearing. Although they scheduled both hearings for everyone who filed a protest, you are not required to go to the informal first.