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Residential Frequently Asked Questions

What do you charge?

For residential protests, there is a one time administrative fee of $75 per property. At the completion of your protest, we charge a contingency fee of 40% of your TOTAL PROPERTY TAX SAVINGS. (Total Property Tax Savings is based on the reduction in your appraised value.) For three or more properties contact the office at Unlike our competitors, BTA does not bill you on homestead exemption amounts or frozen amounts on school or city taxes.

CAPPED ACCOUNTS - If your property's initial market value is greater than its appraised value, you will be charged the greater of the standard contingency fee or $2.50 per $1000 reduction on the initial market value.

When is the last day I can sign up for a protest?

The typical deadline for filing a protest is 30 days after the day you receive your notice from the appraisal district. To have BTA file your protest, sign up by May 15th at 12 PM. Some owners can still sign up with us after the cutoff if they have already filed their protest; click the Sign-Up button in the upper right hand corner to learn more.

How do I sign up to have Bettencourt Tax Advisors protest my property appraisal?

Look for the Account Sign-Up tab in the upper right hand corner of the BTA website and follow the directions.

You will receive a Property Tax Services Agreement and Appointment of Agent form which are necessary in order for Bettencourt Tax Advisors, LLC to serve as your fiduciary at the county appraisal district.

A Property Condition Report (PCR) will also be included. A completed PCR lets the BTA team know of any specific issues concerning your property. Be sure to include any additional documentation/evidence referenced in the PCR. The sooner you complete, sign, date and return this form the sooner we can review it to determine if additional evidence is needed to present your case at the appraisal district.

What is the Market Cap Reduction Program?

"The BTA Market Reduction Program has been very successful for BTA customers by industry norms."

The esteemed Ben Franklin used to say, "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure." BTA introduced the Market Cap Reduction Program in 2014 to offer our customers the opportunity to lower their market cap. (Market Cap = Preliminary Market Value - Preliminary Appraised Value)

When values go up over 20% on average, any reduction in market cap gives a homeowner the advantage of having a lower final value from which any potential increases may be calculated the following year. A lower final value achieved in the current year ARB hearing process is important because it is often used as the base number when appraisal districts use the mass appraisals approach every year to calculate property valuations in neighborhoods. When using the mass appraisal approach a standardized percentage increase is commonly assigned to last year’s property tax valuations of homes in a neighborhood. The more BTA's team can reduce your property valuation this year, the lower your noticed value will likely be next year when any mass appraisal increase or decrease goes into effect and is applied to the previous year's final value.

The Market Cap Reduction Program is the ounce of prevention that homeowners need when the property market is hot. This program gives you the opportunity to lower your market cap at a very low cost of $2.50 for every $1000 reduction in market cap. (If the reduction goes below the capped amount the invoice will reflect the higher of the market cap amount or standard contingency fee.) An example of why the market cap program is so important: a large $40,000 reduction in market cap would only cost $100 this year, but without the reduction you may pay as much as $1000 more on your property tax bill every year. The more you reduce your market cap now, the less tax you are likely to pay in the future!


How will we communicate about information concerning my property?

You will receive emails from BTA about additional information that might be needed for your hearing, hearing results, and judicial appeal and arbitration deadlines.

If I hire Bettencourt Tax Advisors, what does BTA do for me?

BTA will file your protest for you and then represent you at the informal hearing, the formal hearing, and (should you choose to arbitrate or litigate) the judicial appeal.

If there was an over 65 exemption on my property when I took ownership can I keep the exemption?

The over 65 exemption does not transfer with the ownership change. If a new homeowner is over 65, they must apply for their own exemption.

The county has the right to back charge taxes plus interest for up to five years if they discover that an over 65 exemption no longer applies to a property.

When and how do I claim my homestead exemption?

When you bought your house you probably signed or received a homestead exemption form when you were at the title company signing documents for the closing. If for some reason a form was never sent to your local appraisal district, BTA can help you file your homestead exemption form.

Is there a deadline to file my homestead exemption?

You have until January 31st two years after your taxes are due. (Ex: If your taxes were due in 2018 you have until January 31, 2020 to file your exemption.) Pay your taxes as billed and on time. The county will refund the difference once your homestead exemption is approved.

What do I do if the county has incorrect information on record for my property?

Call BTA. We will work with the Appraisal District to rectify any incorrect information shown on your property record. This would be done while protesting your property value and could contribute to lowering the appraised value on your property.

If you need additional information, please call BTA at (713) 263-6100 or email us at