Texas Insider Report: SAN ANTONIO, Texas — State Rep. Steve Allison of San Antonio has filed legislation to protect Texans from property-tax increases driven by ever-escalating appraisals — by effectively locking in property taxes based on the sales price (starting from present values) and then adjusted only upon subsequent sale, transfer, or improvement affecting the value.
House Bill 4024 would freeze the taxable value of a property at its current level. In other words, taxes on the property would be locked in at a fair-market price, as measured by the current appraised value, and would remain there until the property is sold or transferred or improvements are made on the property. The taxable value of new construction would be locked in at the sales price and, likewise, adjusted upon subsequent sale, transfer, or improvement. If the property owner chooses not to disclose the sales price, the current appraisal and tax process would continue to apply.
“Ever-increasing appraisals result in ever-increasing property taxes,” Rep. Allison said.
“Two years ago, the Legislature worked to provide property-tax relief by putting new limits on property-tax rates. But appraisals are just as important to the equation because rising values force tax payments higher, even when the actual tax rate does not change.”
Historical sales and development patterns and the state’s relative economic strength indicate that HB 4024 would still afford additional tax revenues from subsequent sales and development so local governments can manage growth, while still providing immediate property-tax protection for current property owners. Once someone purchases property, the protections will be locked in, subject to sale, transfer, or improvement, as mentioned above.
“Texans are suffering from tax increases caused by rising appraisals,” Allison said.
“This legislation would create a system that is fairer for taxpayers while delivering needed certainty and relief.”
Rep. Allison is serving in his second term representing House District 121, which includes parts of north central and northeast San Antonio, as well as the cities of Alamo Heights, Terrell Hills, and Olmos Park.