Claws for Alarm has a
Bureaucracy strikes again
So, I did my annual pilgrimage to the Travis County Appraisal District today, to contest the appraised value of my house. Usually, it’s not a big deal; I spent a year reviewing appraisals for a living, and for the last eight years, I’ve come out with a reduction in my appraised value.
Not today, however.
The woman I dealt with today informed me that the appraised value was based on the average appraised value in my district. When I suggested that the appraised value was supposed to represent how much money I could actually get for my house, and that my appraised value seemed rather higher than the comparable sales in my neighborhood, she informed me that no, the appraised value was actually based on average appraised values in my neighborhood. Which evidently exist in some alternate universe in which a house’s actual market value is not at all a factor.
Still, I insisted (silly me) on using sales prices as a gauge of value. And when I pointed out that on paper, my house was exactly the same as others that had sold at a rather lower price per square foot, she informed me that there had been an ‘adjustment.’
“For what?” I asked.
She peered at her computer for a moment, pulled out a piece of paper, and said, “Your house is an L-shape. The others are squares. That’s what the (multi-thousand-dollar) adjustment is for.”
When I (perhaps a bit heatedly) suggested that most buyers wouldn’t give a rat’s a** whether the house was square or L-shaped, she remained unmoved.
Needless to say, I’ll be taking this up with the board next week.
Anyone else brave the tax board?