This is actually two questions! 1. What is the difference between the Title company's assesment of a property and the city or the assessment?

Asked by Gregory Hamilton, Irving Heights HOA, Irving, TX Wed Jul 7, 2010

authority? How can these differ?
2. How can i infuence or challenge an assesment for lower taxes?

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Bruce Ericks…, Agent, Dallas, TX
Thu Jul 8, 2010
If you are asking about property taxes then .. one of the tasks a title company does for a closing is to determin any property taxes by local city, schools, county, etc. This is to help in the prorated transfer of property tax liablity from seller to buyer for the current tax year.

Many times the fiqure that you may see on the internet will be different from the final figure from the title company. The title company figuers should be more accurate but they will not be exact. Make sure you talk to your agent and the title company about how the proration works and what you can do if the final tax bill for the year is larger than what the proation was based on.

Best of Luck .. Bruce
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Dallas Texas, Agent, Dallas, TN
Wed Jul 7, 2010
What document are you reading for title assessment? I am with the other agents who responded
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Anne Bokalo, Agent, CANTON, TX
Wed Jul 7, 2010
The city assessment is more general for a larger area eg Homes in N Dallas are valued at at least 245.000. and or price per sq ft to be $129.00, for example. Many times the house value from the bank or Mortgage appraisal is different from the city, usually higher. However, if house values go up and up due to the sales in that area, so that affects your taxes when the city does another appraisal, naturally goes up too.. However, recently it's been upside down since in some areas home values went down but the taxes didn't mainly due to shortages in the city budgets. It all comes down to location location and location and the city budget. .Title companies mainly review paperwork to make sure that there's no problem with the title to the property, hence title insurance. The banks and mortgage co's want to make sure they are getting good value for their investment.
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Bruce Lynn, Agent, Coppell, TX
Wed Jul 7, 2010
There is no such thing that I know of as a "title company assesment of property".
You might mean "bank appraisal" vs "tax appraisal". Two totally different things and often two very different numbers.
Tax appraisal is the value the county tax assessor computer has given to your home. This is what is used to calculate your taxes.
The bank appraisal is used to help the bank determine the collateral value of your home.
Each year around April or May when the tax values are published there is a period of time when you can protest the tax value. You might be able to use the bank appraisal to lower the value if you think the county number is too high, and if successful this would lower your taxes.
If you are in Texas you might read my blog post about tax appraisals at:…
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Don Groff, Agent, Austin, TX
Wed Jul 7, 2010
Hello Gh,

Great question. I am assuming you mean the appraised value when you are referring to the title company's assessment because the title company does not place a value on your property. They act as an impartial 3rd party during the transaction.

Your City or County assess the value of your property for taxing purposes. In most cases. The appraisal is used by the lender to determine value for your loan. An appraisal will in most cases be a more accurate valuation of your property as it is based on recent comparable properties that actually sold.

Of course the best way to determine the value of a home is what a willing buyer is willing to pay for it. When looking for a home your Realtor will pull comps so you can see if the home is priced fairly or not. You can also compare that to what the home is tax appraised at as well.

It is your agents job to help you make an educated offer based on recent sold properties as well as other homes listed on the market. Remember other homes listed on the market are not always a good representation of value because they could easily be overpriced. If you would like more information on making an educated purchase offer you can read my blog that I posted here on Trulia last week. You can find it in my profile. Make sure you are comfortable with your agent that he or she will take the time to make sure you understand the market where you wish to purchase your home.
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Kim Nwachukwu, Agent, Irving, TX
Wed Jul 7, 2010
Title companies do not assess property, at all, ever. By "city or the assessment" I am going to assume that you mean the tax assessment, which could be very different from "fair market value", or a lenders appraisal.

Here are some short definitions:

Tax appraisal - the amount assessed by your local taxing authorities on a property by which your annual taxes are calculated.

Fair market value - what any property will bring in a current marketplace, which is based on many different factors. This could differ from one month to the next, year over year, even week over week depending on market volatility, condition, location and desirability. Also generally stated as "what a buyer will pay and what a seller will accept".

Lender's appraisal - the amount a lender will justify loaning on a given property plus any down payment made by a buyer.

There are a lot of nuances to value. A good Realtor can assist you with questions and help you understand what value means in terms or different assessments.
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