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Texas Property Tax Definitions

Section 1.04 Definitions

The Texas Property Tax Code has precise and detailed rules regarding the assessment, exemptions, appeal and payment of property taxes. Definitions are integral to and utilized throughout the code. Property owners who want to reduce their property taxes or obtain exemptions are impacted by these following definitions:

(1) “Property” means any matter or thing capable of private ownership.
(2) “Real property” means:

  • (A) land;
  • (B) an improvement;
  • (C) a mine or quarry;
  • (D) a mineral in place;
  • (E) standing timber; or
  • (F) an estate or interest, other than a mortgage or deed of trust creating a lien on property or an interest securing payment or performance of an obligation, in a property enumerated in Paragraphs (A) through (E) of this subdivision.

(3) “Improvement” means:

  • (A) a building, structure, fixture, or fence erected on or affixed to land;
  • (B) 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; or
  • (C) for purposes of an entity created under Section 52, Article III, or Section 59, Article XVI, Texas Constitution, the:
    • (i) subdivision of land by plat;
    • (ii) installation of water, sewer, or drainage lines; or
    • (iii) paving of undeveloped land.

(3-a) Notwithstanding anything contained herein to the contrary, a manufactured home is an improvement to real property only if the owner of the home has elected to treat the manufactured home as real property pursuant to Section 1201.2055, Occupations Code, and a certified copy of the statement of ownership and location has been filed with the real property records of the county in which the home is located as provided in Section 1201.2055(d), Occupations Code.

(4) “personal property” means property that is not real property.

(5) “Tangible personal property” means personal property that can be seen, weighed, measured, felt, or otherwise perceived by the senses, but does not include a document or other perceptible object that constitutes evidence of a valuable interest, claim, or right and has negligible or no intrinsic value.

(6) “Intangible personal property” means a claim, interest (other than an interest in tangible property), 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. It includes a stock, bond, note or account receivable, franchise, license or permit, demand or time deposit, certificate of deposit, share account, share certificate account, share deposit account, insurance policy, annuity, pension, cause of action, contract, and goodwill.

(7) “Market value” means the price at which a property would transfer for cash or its equivalent under prevailing market conditions if:

  • (A) exposed for sale in the open market with a reasonable time for the seller to find a purchaser;
  • (B) 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
  • (C) 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.

(8) “Appraised value” means the value determined as provided by Chapter 23 of this code.

(9) “Assessed value” means, for the purposes of assessment of property for taxation, the amount determined by multiplying the appraised value by the applicable assessment ratio, but, for the purposes of determining the debt limitation imposed by Article III, Section 52, of the Texas Constitution, shall mean the market value of the property recorded by the chief appraiser.

These codes affect property owners across the state, in both larger and smaller cities including:

  • Windemere
  • Ponder
  • West Columbia
  • Highland Park
  • Conroe
  • Ashwood
  • Sandy Point
  • Sanger
  • South Houston
  • Bartonville
  • University Park
  • Timberwood Park
  • Pinehurst
  • Highland Village
  • Lago Vista
  • Watauga
  • Hempstead
  • Waterloo
  • High Island
  • Spring Valley

The Texas Property Tax Code applies to all property types in Texas including:

  • Discount store
  • Airplane hangar
  • Medical office
  • Racket club
  • Motel
  • Auto dealer
  • Medical facility
  • Truck terminal
  • Hospital
  • Commercial building

O’Connor & Associates offers property tax services to all property owners of all land uses across Texas.

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