GENERAL BCAD INFORMATION
Who is the Chief Appraiser?
What are your office hours?
Monday - Friday 8 am - 5 pm
What is your physical address?
411 N. Frio St. San Antonio, TX 78207
What is your mailing address?
P.O. Box 830248 San Antonio, TX 78283
What does an appraisal district do?
Each Texas county is served by an appraisal district that determines the value of all of the county's real and personal property. Generally, a local government that collects property taxes, such as a county, city and school district, is a member of the appraisal district.
What are property taxes?
Texas property taxes are ad valorem taxes, Latin for according to value. Appraisal districts are charged with determining property value for the purpose of taxation by the taxing entities. The taxes collected each year are used to provide local services such as schools, roads, hospitals and services like fire and police departments.
What is a taxing entity?
Taxing entities are the local government entities such as cities, hospital districts, junior colleges, and municipal utility districts. Taxing entities provide services to the taxpayers they service such as schools, roads, police, fire, and other services taxpayers expect.
What is an exemption?
An exemption removes a part of your property value from taxation.
Do I qualify for an exemption?
If you own your home and it is your primary residence on January 1st of the tax year, you qualify for a General Homestead exemption. If you own your home, it is your primary residence and you are 65 years of age or older, you qualify for both a General Homestead and an additional exemption based on your age. There are also special exemptions for disabled homeowners and disabled veterans and their survivors. To learn more about exemptions qualifications, please visit the “Tax Information” tab and click on the “Do You Qualify For a Property Tax Exemption?” link.
How do I apply for an exemption?
You may visit the “Forms” tab and download the desired exemption application. You can also call the Appraisal District at 210-242-2432 to request that a form be mailed to you. Once completed, and the required document(s) are attached, you can use any of the following methods to deliver it to us: 1) Mail it to: PO Box 830248, San Antonio, TX 78283
2) Email it to: email@example.com
3) Drop it off in the drop box located in front of our building at 411 N. Frio St., San Antonio, TX 78207
4) You also have the option of applying online by using our online portal, however, you will need to set up an account to do so. Please visit the “Online Services” tab for further information.
Is there a fee to file for an exemption?
There is no fee to file and you do not have to hire anyone to file for you.
Do I need to reapply every year for my homestead exemption?
No, you do not have to reapply unless the chief appraiser requests a new application in writing or you move to a new residence.
Do I qualify for a General Homestead on a mobile home if I do not own the land?
Yes, you will need to include a copy of your title to the mobile home or a verified copy of your purchase contract with the exemption form.
I own more than one home, can I get a homestead on both?
No, you may only receive a homestead exemption on your primary residence.
I will soon be 65, when should I apply for the over 65 exemption?
You may apply at any time during the year you turn 65 years of age. You will receive the exemption for the full year.
Do I need to file an application when I turn 65 years old or is it automatically added?
If we have the owner's date of birth on file, we will automatically add the exemption to the account. If you are unsure if we have that information on file for you, please contact us at (210)242-2432.
Do I qualify for a General Homestead exemption if I occupy/live in a section of my business?
Yes, if you occupy or utilize a portion of the business as your primary residence and are not claiming a General Homestead exemption anywhere else, you may qualify for a Homestead apportionment.
Does a non-profit organization automatically receive a property tax exemption?
No, often organizations mistakenly believe they are entitled to a property tax exemption because they have received a federal income tax exemption under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code or an exemption from State sales taxes. The Constitutional requirements for property tax exemptions are different than the provisions covering income and sales taxes. A non-profit organization may qualify for a total exemption from property taxes, but they must apply by April 30th. Refer to the Forms page for exemption applications and requirements.
GENERAL ACCOUNT INFORMATION
How can I update my mailing address?
You may fill out the change of address form or simply make the request in writing. Either way, the request must be made in writing by the property owner or the agent. Please note, if you are making the request for multiple properties, you will need to list every account that needs the mailing address updated in your request.
Once complete, you can use any of the following methods to deliver the request to us:
1) Submit the form/written request by mail to PO Box 830243, San Antonio, TX 78283
2) Drop off the form/written request to the drop box located in front of our building at 411 N. Frio St.
San Antonio, TX 78207
3) Email the form/written request to CS@bcad.org
I just bought/sold a property. How do I update the ownership?
If the deed has been filed with the County Clerk’s office, we will eventually receive it and process the ownership transfer accordingly. However, to expedite the process, you may call us and provide the recorded document number, or e-mail us a scanned copy of the document at CS@bcad.org.
What if the ownership on file does not reflect the current ownership of a property?
You can contact us at (210)242-2432 or email us at CS@bcad.org to discuss the discrepancy. We will need to research the records we have on file for the account before making any changes.
What it a situs address? Does the appraisal district assign these?
The situs address is the physical address of a property. The appraisal district does not assign the situs address. This information is obtained through authoritative records provided by the City of San Antonio and/or City Public Service.
How can I make changes to the situs address on file?
If you feel we have the incorrect info listed for a particular property, please notify us of the correct address info via phone call at 210-242-2432 or email us at CS@bcad.org. In some instances, we are able to verify the correct address through the authoritative records. If your property is within the City of San Antonio, we can verify through their online mapping system. If you are outside the City of San Antonio, we may need to contact CPS to verify
I own multiple lots/tracts of land. Can I request that my property be split up into separate accounts or merged into one?
Yes. You can make the request by filling out this form and return to CS@bcad.org. You may also mail the completed form to PO Box 830248, San Antonio, TX 78283 or even drop off to the drop box located in front of our building at 411 N. Frio St., San Antonio, TX 78207. Be sure to include your contact information in case we need to contact you about your request.
How is my property appraised?
Generally for residential property, the appraised value of your property is an estimate of what the appraisal district believes your property would most likely sell for on January 1st of the current year. We calculate this estimate by analyzing current sales in your neighborhood and comparing your home to those homes that sold as well as considerations of size, classification, and depreciation due to its condition and age. The appraisal district may use three common methods to value property: market, cost and income approach.
What is fair market value?
Fair market value means the price at which a property would transfer for cash or its equivalent under prevailing market conditions if exposed for sale in the open market with a reasonable time for the seller to find a purchaser. Both the seller and the purchaser know all of 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. Both the seller and the purchaser seek to maximize their gains and neither is in a position to take advantage of the exigencies of the other.
What is a market transaction?
In real estate, there’s no better indication of market value or how much a property is truly worth than what someone has decided to pay for a property or what somebody has decided to sell the same property for, assuming the buyer and seller were represented by real estate professionals, the property was listed and marketed out in the open market and open to attract multiple offers, and neither the buyer or the seller is in a position to take advantage of the each other
How do I find out the appraised value of my property?
Property value information can be obtained by visiting the Property Search tab and performing a search of your property, or by calling our office at (210)242-2432.
What is a Notice of Appraised Value (NOAV)?
The Notice of Appraised Value contains a description of your property, its current value, the exemptions and an estimate of taxes that might be owed. A notice is generated if the value of your property has increased by more than $1,000 from the previous year or if your property is new and was not appraised in the previous year.
When do you mail Notices of Appraised Value?
The Chief Appraiser sends out a detailed Notice of Appraised Value to property owners and/or the agent of record annually, usually by April 15th.
Why did my value change?
Value changes may occur for several reasons. As it pertains to residential property, often sales information may indicate the current appraised value is lower/higher than fair market. Also, corrections to appraisal records may affect value, such as: change in square footage, a pool not previously accounted for, or a correction of a property characteristic. As it pertains to commerical property, the preferred valuation method on income producing properties is the Income approach. This means we must survey and collect the most current market rental rates in the area, occupancy rates, typical market expense ratios and cap rates in order to accurately estimate a property’s net operating income.
Why is the assessed value on my NOAV important?
Your property's assessed value is not the same as its market value. The market value of your property may increase or decrease by any amount year-to-year. If you have a General Homestead exemption on your property, the increase in your assessed value is limited from year-to-year to 10% so long as changes have not been made that add new value (such as an addition).
Can I obtain another copy of my Notice of Appraised Value?
Yes, you may refer to the Property Search tab and perform a search for your property; the notice will be available in your options. If you have an account on our online portal, you can access the notice there. You can also call our office at (210)242-2432 or email us at CS@bcad.org to request a copy.
How do I file a protest?
If you received a Notice of Appraised Value, a protest form will be included for your convenience. You can also download a Notice of Protest form by visiting the Forms tab. You can also submit a written statement indicating your desire to protest. Completed protest forms can be:
1) Mailed to: PO Box 830248, San Antonio, TX 78283
2) Emailed to: firstname.lastname@example.org
3) Dropped off in the drop box located in front of our building at 411 N. Frio St., San Antonio, TX 78207
4) You also have the option of e-filing a protest by using our online portal, however, you will need to set up an account to do so. Please visit the “Online Services” tab for further information and instructions.
What is the deadline to file a protest?
Generally, the deadline is May 15th each year OR 30 days after receiving a Notice of Appraised Value. The deadline date is printed on the notice for your reference.
When I protest my property, am I protesting the market value or the assessed value?
Per the Texas Property Tax Code, market value is the only value permitted to be protested with the appraisal district. Assessed value is a statutory calculation based on the previous year's assessed value and cannot be protested.
My taxes are too high. Can I protest my taxes?
No, the appraisal district determines market value and has no control over the tax rates or resulting tax bill.
What is the process once I protest?
You will be scheduled to discuss the issues of your protest with representatives of the appraisal district and/or the Appraisal Review Board and a final determination will be made.
When will I get notice of the scheduled hearings?
Once your hearing has been scheduled, we will mail a Notice of Protest Hearing letter at least 15 days before the scheduled formal hearing date. Included with that letter will be a copy of Property Taxpayer’s Remedies (a publication of the State Comptroller’s Office), a copy of the ARB hearing procedures, and a statement that you have the right to inspect the information that the Appraisal District plans to introduce at your hearing, referred to as evidence.
What is the difference between an informal hearing and a formal hearing?
An informal hearing is scheduled prior to the formal hearing. Your participation is optional but here you will have the option to discuss the appraised value of your home solely with an appraiser from the Appraisal District. If you and the appraiser (appraisal district) can come to an agreement on your protest case, your case will be considered closed and you will not have to appear before the Appraisal Review Board for the formal hearing. This will be the final determination on the case. You do not have the option to take further action if you are unsatisified with the outcome. If you cannot come to an agreement with the appraiser or you choose not to participate in the informal hearing, you will need to attend your scheduled formal hearing and present your case to the ARB who will make the final decision on the case. A formal hearing before the ARB is conducted very much like a court case. The ARB sets its own procedures with guidelines from the State Comptroller’s Office. Generally, ARB panels are three-member panels, but may be more. Typically, after formal introduction of the parties and the property involved, the ARB will hear evidence from the property owner and the Appraisal District and make a judgment based on the evidence presented. Each party, the property owner and the Appraisal District appraiser, will have approximately 3-5 minutes to present their case and evidence at the hearing. Most ARB hearings take approximately 15 minutes and the property owner will know the ARB's recommendation before they leave the hearing. After a recommendation is made by the ARB panel and subsequently approved by a quorum of the entire Board, a written Notice of Final Order is sent by certified mail to you or your agent. This decision is binding for the current tax year unless you file under binding arbitration, appeal to SOAH or appeal to District Court.
What is the Appraisal Review Board (ARB)?
The Appraisal Review Board is a group of private citizens authorized to resolve disputes between taxpayers and the appraisal district. Although the ARB is funded by the Appraisal District, they are appointed by the Local Administrative District Judge. The ARB is a separate authoritative body. No employees or officers of the Appraisal District or the taxing units it serves may sit on the ARB. To qualify for service on the ARB, an individual must be a resident of the Appraisal District for at least two years prior to taking office. Any person who is a former member of the governing body or officer or employee of a taxing unit, or is a former director, officer, or employee of the Appraisal District is ineligible to serve. Also the person’s close relatives cannot work as professional tax agents or tax appraisers within the Appraisal District. ARB members also must comply with special conflict of interest laws.
Where are the ARB hearings conducted?
Hearings are conducted at the Bexar Appraisal District's office located at: 411 N. Frio St., San Antonio, TX 78207.
What should I bring to the hearing?
In preparation for your formal hearing you should gather any evidence that you feel will support your opinion of value of your home. This would include sales of comparable homes in your neighborhood, the purchase price of your home if obtained recently, photographs of your home that may reflect any negative conditions such as cracks, flood damage, and so forth. By law, a copy of all evidence submitted to the ARB must be retained for public record; therefore paper is preferred. It is also recommended that you create extra copies for your records as well. Electronic evidence is not permitted; this could be, but not limited to, flash drives, evidence on a phone and/or laptop, etc.
What happens after the formal hearing?
At the hearing, the ARB will immediately inform you of the final determination of your protest case. Shortly thereafter you will receive, by certified mail, a written order from the ARB reflecting the final determination that was approved at your formal hearing. Included with the written order will be information on what options you have if you wish to appeal that final determination.
Can I reschedule my formal hearing?
If you have not designated a tax agent to represent you at your formal protest hearing, you are entitled to one postponement if requested prior to the day of your formal hearing. The date that you are requesting must be no more than 30 days from the date of your original formal hearing date. To reschedule your formal hearing, contact us by email at email@example.com or by call our office at (210)242-2432. Be advised that informal hearings cannot be rescheduled as they are a courtesy and not mandatory.
What happens if I do not come to the formal hearing?
Your protest will be dismissed if you do not appear in person, through a valid Affidavit, by agent or by pre-scheduled telephone hearing. You may request that the ARB Chairperson reopen the hearing by sending a letter within 4 days of the dismissal citing the good cause reason for failure to appear. Requests can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org or mailed to PO Box 830248, San Antonio, TX 78283.
Why are you inspecting my property?
In order to produce accurate appraisals on all property within Bexar County, we must visit them periodically to ensure that the data used in making the appraisal is still correct. For instance, the appraisal district could have received a copy of a building permit indicating that a room was being added and an appraiser may inspect the property to ensure the property characteristics are correct.
What is an improvement according to the appraisal district?
In appraisal, the term improvement is a building, structure, fixture, or fence erected on or affixed to land; or a transportable structure that is designed to be occupied for residential or business purposes, whether or not it is affixed to land, if the owner of the structure owns the land on which it is located, unless the structure is unoccupied and held for sale or normally is located at a particular place only temporarily.
Has anyone physically come out and looked at my property?
Yes, someone has reviewed your property, but it may not have been this year.
What is a Homestead Cap?
In general, the ASSESSED home value for a homeowner who qualifies for a General Homestead Exemption in the preceding and current year, may not increase more than 10 percent per year.
My house was not completed as of January 1st. How do you appraise it?
It will be added to the tax roll at the percentage of completion as of January 1st. If the home is finished by January 1st of the following year, percentage will increase as will the value of the property.
Are property taxes based on a percentage?
No, they are based on 100% of the fair market value of your property.
Can I get a list of all residential sales?
Per Section 22.27 of the Texas Property Tax Code, the appraisal district is prohibited from disclosing sales information gathered from a private source. Taxpayers who have protested his or her property value are entitled to the sales used to value his or her property but no other sales information.
How is my Commercial property appraised?
The market value of property shall be determined by the application of generally accepted appraisal methods and techniques. Bexar Appraisal District uses 3 valuation methods: the Cost Method, the Sales Method & the Income Method.
All appraisal methods use different set of information to arrive at a market value opinion;
- the Cost Method encompasses calculating a property’s RCN (Replacement Cost New) and then adjusting for any appropriate depreciation based on age/condition/location etc.
- the Market Sales Method involves the analyzing of comparable market sales and then adjusting for any differences between the subject property and the selected comparable properties.
- the Income Method is the most commonly used method in the valuation of commercial properties. It sets out to calculate a property’s Net Operating Income (NOI) by estimating a property’s total rental income minus normal expenses and then capitalizing the NOI by a prevailing the Cap Rate.
How often is my property appraised?
Commercial properties are being valued on a yearly basis and the values are as of January 1st of every year.
Why is my property valued as Commercial if it is used a residence?
Some properties may be considered to have commercial potential even if they’re being used as residential. For example, properties that are in an area where the “highest and best” use has changed due to zoning changes, gentrification, and/or if the area is growing or transitioning into a more commercial driven nature.
Are there exemptions available for Commerical properties?
There are a number of special exemptions available to commercial properties that serve a very specific purpose. Among these are: properties that offer Affordable or low-income housing to a segment of the population (LIH), Pollution Controls or organizations that perform charitable or religious activities. Refer to the Taxpayer Resources and Forms tabs for further information.
How are Commerical properties categorized?
There are 5 major commercial property categories:
Commercial Land Office, Retail, Multifamily (Apartments) and Industrial.
Each type may have different subcategories due to size, service provided or target tenant. For example:
- in the Multifamily type there are Conventional apartments, Low income Housing Apartments or student housing apartments.
- In the Retail category you may have your Retail indoor Malls or neighborhood shopping centers.
All categories and subcategories are valued using their own unique characteristics and attributes which may be different from the major to sub-category.
What is a Capitalization rate?
The income approach is predicated on the idea that the value of an income producing property is based on the quantity and quality of the income stream. The quantity of the income stream is most often represented by the net operating income and the quality of the income stream is represented by the capitalization rate. The net operating income, or NOI, is capitalized at an appropriate rate to arrive at an estimate of value.
The formula for this is: V = I/R
Where V= Value, I = Income or NOI, and R = capitalization rate.
What is Direct Capitalization?
A method used to convert an estimate of a single year’s income expectancy into an indication of value in one direct step, either by diving the net operating estimate by an appropriate capitalization rate or by multiplying the income estimate by the appropriate factor. Direct capitalization employs capitalization rates and multipliers extracted or developed from market data. The Direct Capitalization approach only uses one year’s income.
What does Income Producing Property mean?
This is a property that is held or purchased for its income potential or its future income stream potential collected through leasing or the collection of rent.
What is Gross Building Area?
This refers to the total floor area of a building, excluding unenclosed areas, measured from exterior of the walls; includes both the superstructure floor area and the substructure or basement area.
What is Net Rentable Area?
This is also known as rentable area, net rentable square feet or usable area. The simple definition is that the net rentable area is the area (or square footage) for which rent can be charged.
What is Secondary Income on an income producing property?
Also referred to as Ancillary income, it’s normally the income which is produced by amenities or services or through creative strategies in either leasing or marketing.
What does Zoning mean?
Zoning refers to municipal or local laws or regulations that dictate how real property can and cannot be used in certain geographic areas. These laws can be modified or suspended if construction of the property will serve to help the community advance economically. Please contact your local zoning department for more details (COSA) as Bexar Appraisal District does not assign zoning areas.
Can I request a site inspection of my property?
Yes, if you feel the appraisal district has the wrong information on your property, you may call us at (210)242-2432. You can also visit the Property Search link on the home page to verify the current information we have on file for your property.
BUSINESS PERSONAL PROPERTY
How do I send a copy of the Dealer Motor Vehicle Inventory Tax payment to BCAD?
You can choose to email to: email@example.com, mail to: PO BOX 830248, SAN ANTONIO, TX 78283, or fax to: (210)242-2452
When is the Monthly VIT Statement and Declaration due?
Dealer Motor Vehicle Inventory Tax Statements are due on or before the 10th of each month. DECLARATIONS - Except as provided by Tax Code Section 23.122(l), a declaration must be filed not later than Feb. 1 of each year or, in the case of a dealer who was not in business on Jan. 1, not later than 30 days after commencement of the business. A dealer is presumed to have commenced business on the date of issuance of a dealer’s general distinguishing number as provided by Transportation Code Chapter 503. Notwithstanding this presumption, a chief appraiser may, at his or her sole discretion, designate another date on which a dealer commenced business.
What is a rendition for Business Personal Property?
A rendition is a form that provides the appraisal district with the description, location, cost and acquisition dates for business personal property that you own. The appraisal district uses the information to help estimate the market value of your property for taxation purposes.
Who must file a rendition?
Renditions must be filed by both owners of tangible personal property that is used for the production of income and owners of tangible personal property on which an exemption has been cancelled or denied.
How do I submit my rendition to the Bexar Appraisal District?
Renditions may be hand-delivered, mailed by first-class mail with a postmark of April 15th, or transmitted by facsimile by same date. Additional information can be found on our website at www.bcad.org.
When must the rendition be filed?
After January 1 and not later than April 15th, except as provided by Section 22.02 of the Tax Code. If April 15th falls on a weekend, the rendition deadline is the next business day.
I went out of business during the year will my business personal property taxes be prorated?
No, if you were in business January 1st you owe taxes for the year.
What types of property must be rendered?
Business owners are required by State law to render business personal property that is used in a business or used to produce income. This property includes furniture and fixtures, equipment, machinery, computers, inventory held for sale or rental, raw materials, finished goods, and work in progress. You are not required to render intangible personal property (property that can be owned but does not have a physical form) such as cash, accounts receivable, goodwill, application computer software, and similar items. If your organization has previously qualified for an exemption that applies to personal property, for example, a religious or charitable organization exemption, you are not required to render the exempt property.
Where can I find the rendition form?
The forms are available on the district website on the Forms page or at the BCAD office.
Will I get a notification that my rendition was received?
No. If you would like notification we suggest you mail your rendition form via certified mail.
Does my rendition have to be notarized?
No. Notarization is only required if you are not a secured party, property owner, an employee of the property owner or an employee of a property owner on behalf of an affiliated entity of the property owner.
How do I fill out the rendition form?
If you need assistance filling out your rendition you may attend one of our information and assistance sessions held yearly in February, March, and April. Specific dates and times will be announced on our website, www.bcad.org and information inserts will be mailed with renditions to property owners.
May I use my bookkeeping records as my rendition?
Yes. Attach these records to the rendition, sign and date it and then return it to our office. Include asset listings with the date of acquisition and original cost. All assets owned by the business must be rendered.
If nothing has changed in my business how do I report this on the rendition form?
If after careful review of your records you determine the information on the most recent prior year rendition you filed is still complete and accurate as of January 1st of this year and in compliance with Section 22.01, then you would qualify to file an abbreviated rendition. To do so, check the box titled “Same as 20_ _” in the first page of the rendition form. Please sign in the Signature section. Return the completed, abbreviated rendition to Bexar Appraisal District.
Is the information I render to the district confidential?
Yes. Information contained in a rendition cannot be disclosed to third parties except in very limited circumstances. In addition, the Texas Property Tax Code specifically provides that any estimate of value you provide is not admissible in proceedings other than a protest to the Appraisal Review Board (ARB) or court proceedings. The final value we place on your property is public information, but your rendition is not.
What will the appraisal district do with the information I render?
Your rendition will be analyzed along with other information we collect on similar businesses, to develop an estimate of value for your property.
If I cannot file the rendition on time, what should I do?
The law provides for an extension of time to file a rendition. In order to receive the extension, you must submit the request to the Bexar Appraisal District, in writing, by April 15. With the receipt of a timely extension request, the rendition filing deadline will be extended to May 15th. Please note that requests for extensions must be submitted by the business owner or the business owner’s authorized agent on file with the Bexar Appraisal District. Extension requests submitted by unauthorized agents will not be granted.
What happens if I do not file a rendition, or file it late?
If you do not file a rendition, the appraised value of your property will be based on an appraiser's estimate using comparable business types. In addition, if you fail to file your rendition before the deadline or you do not file it at all, a penalty equal to 10% of the amount of taxes ultimately imposed on the property will be levied against you.
Is sales tax included in the sales price of heavy equipment or in the monthly lease or rental payment, as applicable?
Yes, the sales price includes the sales tax. The sales price of heavy equipment is defined in Section 23.1241(a)(7), Tax Code, as total amount of money paid or to be paid to a dealer for the purchase of an item of heavy equipment or for a lease or rental with an option to purchase, the total amount of the lease or rental payments plus any final consideration, excluding interest. The sales price includes the sales tax since it is part of the money paid or to be paid to a dealer for the purchase of the heavy equipment.
Can previous lease and rental payments be deducted from the cost of a piece of heavy equipment being sold?
Yes, interest payment can be deducted. Section 23.1241(a)(7) states that the sales price is the total amount of the lease or rental payments plus any final consideration, excluding interest. For purposes of the annual declaration used to determine the property tax on the market value of a dealer's inventory, Section 23.1241(b-1) provides that the sales price of an item of heavy equipment that is sold during the preceding year is considered to be the sum of the sales price for the item plus the total lease and rental payments received for the item in the preceding tax year.
Should the cost of warranties in the sales price of heavy equipment be included before applying the unit property tax?
It depends on how the transaction is written. If the cost of warranties is set up as a separate transaction, then it is not part of the sales price of the heavy equipment. If, however, the cost of warranty is part of the single transaction in the purchase of the heavy equipment, then that cost is included as part of the sales price since it is part of the money paid or to be paid to a dealer for the purchase of the heavy equipment.
Is anyone who sells, leases or rents heavy equipment a dealer? Or must the person be engaged in the business in this state of selling, leasing or renting heavy equipment?
Section 23.1241(a)(1) defines dealer as a person engaged in the business in this state of selling, leasing, or renting heavy equipment. Note: An appraisal district can check to see if the person has a Texas sales tax permit. A dealer engaged in business in Texas that sells or leases heavy equipment must be permitted to collect state and local sales tax since these are taxable transactions for sales tax purposes.
If you are a heavy equipment dealer, do you still have to render under Chapter 22?
Yes, a heavy equipment dealer is required to render all tangible personal property used for the production of income, as required by Section 22.01, Tax Code. See also Section 23.1241(d) that addresses personal property held by a dealer and a dealer who sells predominately to other dealers. The more difficult question here is not whether they are required to render, but whether they are required to render the inventory that is otherwise appraised under Section 23.1241. It seems that chief appraisers have not been requiring those dealers to render their inventory, but have been considering the declaration they are required to file to meet the rendition requirement. Nonetheless, there is nothing specific in the Tax Code which exempts inventory owners from the rendition requirements.
How are lease/rental agreements effective 2012 treated?
The dealer's inventory value is based on the total sales and leases/rentals for the preceding tax year. Those will be reported on the Dealer's Heavy Equipment Inventory Declaration. The form provides that the dealer who was not in business for the entire 12 month period reports the months in business. For each month, the Dealer's Heavy Equipment Inventory Tax Statement will list each sale, lease or rental during that month. For these sales, leases and rentals, the dealer will report the unit property tax for that heavy equipment.
Are excess funds in the escrow account after all property taxes have been paid to the appropriate taxing units be carried over to the next tax year?
No, excess funds are carried over to the next tax year. Section 23.1242(j) provides that no later than February 15, the tax collector shall distribute to each appropriate taxing unit... all funds collected under authority of this section and held in escrow... In other words, funds deposited during the calendar year are used to pay the heavy equipment dealer's tax bill on the dealer's inventory; the tax collector distributes the deposited funds to the taxing units on or before January 31 of the following year and then any remaining in the account by February 15. No funds are carried forward to pay the next year's tax bill. Current law allows a heavy equipment dealer to apply for a refund of prepaid taxes on a sale that is a fleet transaction (sale of five or more items of heavy equipment in one calendar year). This is the only provision for returning money in an escrow account to a heavy equipment dealer.
Do the exclusions for fleet transactions, sales to dealers, and subsequent sales apply to leases and rentals?
No, these exclusions all deal with sales of heavy equipment; therefore, they do not apply to leases and rentals. Please note that the definition of subsequent sale includes: The term does not include a rental or lease with an unexercised purchase option or without a purchase option. Leased or rented equipment in which the lessee/renter has exercised a purchase option changes that leased/rented equipment to a sale.
If the same auction house is used by a company to sell all of its used equipment, is this considered a fleet sale?
If the dealer is selling the used equipment to the auction company and sells five or more items in one calendar year, then the dealer reports those sales as fleet transactions. The auction company reports its sales as a dealer selling heavy equipment. In some cases, however, an auction company is not taking ownership of the heavy equipment but is handling the sales transaction for the dealer. So, the final answer will depend on the arrangements between the dealer and the auction company.
What is considered heavy equipment?
Section 23.1241(a)(6) defines heavy equipment as any item of equipment that is self-propelled, self-powered, or pull-type equipment, including farm equipment or a diesel engine, that weighs at least, 500 pounds and is intended to be used for agricultural, construction, industrial, maritime, mining, or forestry uses. It does not include a motor vehicle required to be titled or registered.
Can we treat all attachments sold or rented with heavy equipment as heavy equipment?
Yes, the heavy equipment and attachments are sold or rented as one transaction with a total sales price. If a dealer sells an attachment as a separate transaction and that attachment does not meet the definition of heavy equipment, then it is not part of the dealer's heavy equipment inventory. The part may be part of the dealer's other personal property inventory. Some dealers have parts departments that the dealer renders and the appraisal district appraises as regular inventory under Tax Code Section 23.12.
Does the requirement that the owner of the equipment shall state the amount of the unit property tax assigned as a separate line item on an invoice apply to sales?
Changes to Section 23.1241(b) include this new sentence: The owner of the equipment shall state the amount of the unit property tax assigned as a separate line item on an invoice. The paragraph in which this new sentence is found addresses both sales and lease/rental transactions. This line item should appear on all invoices.
Is a dealer who does not owe property tax because the dealer was not in business on Jan. 1 prohibited from assigning a unit property tax apply only to sales or to sales, leases and rentals?
Section 23.1242(g) addresses a dealer who owes no heavy equipment inventory tax for the current year because the dealer was not in business on January 1. The dealer files the monthly statements each month that the dealer is in business. Section 23.1242(g)(2) states that the dealer may not assign a unit property tax to an item of heavy equipment sold by the dealer or remit money with the statement. It appears that the Legislature failed to correct the language in this subsection to reflect changes to include leases or rentals. An exception is Section 23.1242(k) that addresses a person who acquires another dealer's business and has a contract to pay the selling dealer's inventory taxes.