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Taxpayer Rights Exemptions Property Tax Code Terminology
  • Terms Often Used in Property Tax Code

    Absolute exemption – 100% exemption given to institutional property.

    Appraisal roll – The official list of all taxable property within the boundaries of the appraisal district. Each tax unit receives its portion (its assessment roll) as determined by its boundaries.

    Appraise – Means to place a value on property. In the Property Tax Code it means the official listing and valuing of all property in the appraisal district.

    Appraised value – The value determined as provided by Chapter 23 of the Property Tax Code. That is, full market value for some property, but a very low value on agricultural and timber land.

    Assessment roll – The portion of the appraisal roll delivered to the tax unit. The tax rate is set by the tax unit and applied to this roll.

    Assessed value – For the purposes of assessment of property for taxation, the amount determined by multiplying the appraised value by the applicable assessment (100%).

    Assessor – The officer responsible for assessing property taxes as provided by Chapter 26 of the Property Tax Code for a taxing unit. The appraisal district officers prepare the assessment roll and present it to the assessors of the tax units.

    Base – The tax base if the foundation on which the tax is laid. A tax unit’s base is described in its assessment roll. Base multiplied by rate equals tax revenue due. That foundation within a municipality consists of land, personal property, improvements, utilities, ETC.

    Building – A residential, commercial, agricultural, or industrial structure. Buildings, other than institutional, and the land directly under them are fully taxable at market value.

    Challenge – The name of the remedy given to tax units to contest a dispute with the appraisal district.

    Clerical error – results for a mistake or failure in writing, copying, transcribing, entering or retrieving computer data, computing, or calculating or prevents an appraisal roll or a tax roll from accurately reflecting a finding or determination made by the chief appraiser.

    Collector – The officer responsible for collecting property taxes for a taxing unit.

    Greenbelt land – A term used to describe open land other than agricultural or timber land that is entitled to a special appraisal.

    Improved land- Land directly under a building. It is usually fully taxable. It is distinguished from open land which is slightly taxable.

    Improvement – A building, structure, fixture, or fence erected on or affixed to land of a transportable structure that is designed to be occupied for residential or business purposes, whether or not it is affixed to land.

    Institutional property – Term used or churches, city halls, courthouses, schools YMCA, veteran’s building and other property entitled to an absolute, or 100% exemption.

    Intangible personal property – Means a claim, interest, right, or other thing that has value but cannot be seen, felt, weighed, measured, or otherwise perceived by the senses, although its existence may be evidenced by a document. Example stock, bond, note, franchise, license, certificate of deposit.

    Tangible Personal Property – Personal property that can be seen, weighed, measured, felt or otherwise perceived the senses.

    Market Value
    1. Exposed for sale in the open market with a reasonable time for the seller to find a purchaser.
    2. Both the seller and the purchaser know of all the uses and purposes to which the property is adapted and for which it is capable of being used and of the enforceable restrictions on its use and 3. Both the seller and purchaser seek to maximize their gains and neither is in a position to take advantage of the exigencies of the other.

    Personal Property – Means property that is not real property.

    Real Property – Land, an improvement, a mine or quarry, a mineral in place, standing timber or an estate or interest, other that a mortgage or deed of trust creating a lien on property or an interest securing payment or performance of an obligation, in a property.

    Revenue – Tax money flowing into the taxing unit. It is estimated by multiplying the assumed tax base by a proposed tax rate.

    Tax – The process of multiplying each single property by the rate.

    Taxing Unit – A political unit of this state that is authorized to impose and is imposing ad valorem taxes on property.