Constitutional Standards

Texas State Constitution Property Tax Standards

The Texas State Constitution sets out five standards for the property tax:

  1. Taxation must be equal and uniform. All property must be valued and taxed in an equal and uniform manner. This provision, which is an equity standard, helps ensure that no single property or type of property pays more than its fair share of taxes.
  2. With some exceptions, all tangible property must be taxed on its January 1 market value. The exceptions include certain agricultural, timber, and recreational, park, and scenic land subject to special appraisal. A property's market value is the price for which it would sell when both buyer and seller want the best price and neither is under pressure to buy or sell.
  3. All property is taxable unless federal or state law provides an exemption for it. An exemption excludes all or part of a property's value from taxation.
  4. Property owners have a right to reasonable notice of increases in appraised property values.
  5. Each property in a given appraisal district must have one appraised value. An appraisal district's boundaries generally follow the boundaries of the taxing units which are located in it.