SAN ANTONIO – Kimberly Aubuchon's 1,800-square-foot King William home is her castle. Now she has the appraisal notice to prove it.
"(It's) a lot more money than I was expecting to pay," she said.
Aubuchon's valuation is a whopping 40 percent higher than last year. But it's not the house that jumped in value, it's the land. The land value skyrocketed $80,000 in one year.
"We'll protest for sure," she said.
Aubuchon is not alone. A steady rate of people walked into the Bexar County Appraisal District offices on North Frio to file notices of appeal.
That's the first step. The form can be found at www.bcad.org.
"It's always good to question it," Bexar chief appraiser Mike Amezquita said.
Amezquita encourages property owners to take advantage of their legal rights and challenge the values if they disagree.
"We believe homeowners know more about their values than anybody," he said.
Appraisers follow the market and determine values based on sales. However, sales figures can be difficult to obtain.
"When they file that protest, ask for the evidence package," Amezquita said. "That will show you specifically what information was used to value your property."
There is a box to check on the form to get the evidence packet.
The Appraisal District will set two hearings. The first one is informal, where Amezquita said 80 percent of appeals are settled.
Amezquita encourages property owners to bring any evidence, such as estimates for repairs and photographs of the property.
"Pictures are worth a thousand words," he said.
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