An Introduction to Harris County Property Tax

Harris County is home to one of the most dynamic real estate markets in the nation. The rapid market transformation and the growing interest from investors have led to an uptick in sales prices. All the estimations indicate a steady growth of the size of the real market in the county and a 15%-30% increase in residential property values.

But deciding whether it’s an excellent opportunity for investment or not, requires more than a few statistics on the market trends. In this article, we’ll dive into the changes in property taxes in Harris County, their impact on homeowners and the benefits of purchasing a property in the most populous county in Texas. Let’s begin:

Harris County Property Tax

Harris County Property Tax

Photo by Karolina Grabowska from Pexels

What You Should Know About Harris County Property Tax

Harris County Appraisal District (HCAD) is the legal entity in charge of setting laws and regulations regarding property assessment in the county. According to the HCAD, the average effective property tax rate is 2.13% which is almost double the national average tax rate.

The main driver of Harris County Property Tax is the rapidly growing real estate market and increasing demand for residential properties in the area. As of March 2023, the median price of residential property in Harris County is evaluated to be approximately $311K, 0.2% more than the previous year.

While there are hot debates in the public media and Harris County Commissioners Court to pass new regulations and reduce the tax rates for the coming years, the current trends in the market and the increasing property values will probably lead to a different direction in the near future.

Homeowners and High Property Taxes

Whenever there are historically unprecedented rates in the market, you will see certain reactions from the demand side of the market. For instance, one would expect that a high Harris County Property Tax would lead to less demand in the real estate market. But that turns out to be far from the truth.

Despite the increased assessed value of residential properties, the area still has one of the most active real estate markets in Texas. But the question is how people manage the costs and benefits of living in Harris County considering having one of the highest rates across the nation.

While there are many ways to benefit from tax exemptions, households with low income are at the risk of losing their house as they simply cannot afford to keep up with the increased tax rates. In some cases, this can lead to gentrification and displacement which typically occur in low-income and minority communities.

On the other hand, Harris County is a great example of a residential area where taxes are extremely well-spend. All you need is to spend a few days in the country and see the quality of public services in the area, ranging from schools and educational institutions to hospitals, law enforcement facilities, and infrastructure projects.

Not to mention that there are third-party entities that provide homeowners with an objective assessment of their property if they feel that their property tax assessment is too high or unfair. The Harris County Appraisal Review Board (ARB) for instance, is a group of citizens authorized to resolve tax-related disputes, reviews tax assessments and makes adjustments if necessary.

Benefits of Purchasing a Property in Harris County

By now, your main question should be whether purchasing a property in Harris County is worth your money or not. So, let’s explore some of the key advantages of investing in the Harris County real estate market:

Harris County Property Tax

Harris County Property Tax

Photo by Brett Sayles from Pexels

#1 Strong Job Market

The job market is probably not one of the factors you consider when purchasing a property. But as it turns out, it is one of the most determining factors for value property and a guaranteed future for building a thriving business in the local community. Moreover, this means you will have no problem finding lucrative career opportunities.

Harris County is one of the greatest examples of a growing economy with phenomenal services in a wide range of industries and market niches including energy, education, healthcare, and aerospace. Harris County also hosts many well-known brands like ConocoPhillips, Phillips 66, and Marathon Oil.

#2 Affordable Cost of Living

While Harris County Property tax may be one of the highest in the country, there are many upsides to living in the area. Most importantly, Harris County despite being one of the most populous regions in the U.S. has a relatively low cost of living and high living standard, considering all the routine household expenditures such as utilities, transportation, etc.

The cherry on top, Texas does not have a state income tax. So you can keep all your hard-earned money and spend it where you want.

#3 Diverse Community

People who move to new neighbourhoods are always concerned about the type of people they will encounter on a daily basis. Ideally, you want a neighbourhood with a welcoming atmosphere, high safety, and like-minded people who can accept you as a member of their community.

Harris County hosts one of the most vibrant communities in the nation with a diverse population from different ethnic and cultural backgrounds living and working side by side. You can just visit the county’s festivals to see how lively and rich the culture can be.

#4 Investment Opportunities

What could be possibly better than purchasing a property in an area with a promising future? As mentioned earlier, Harris County showcases one of the greatest real estate markets in the U.S. with a wealth of investment opportunities for those looking to park their money in a guaranteed spot!

While many business niches are gradually finding their place with ups and downs along the road, the real estate market has been the constant element of growth over the past couple of years. In short, this is a place where you can purchase a property and make sure that the value of your money will only increase.

#5 Weather

Who can not fall in love with Harris County’s warm and sunny climate? If you are a fan of outdoor activities, you have pretty much every single day to enjoy yourself here. Although keep in mind that summers can be really hot in Texas, so make sure you have your AC up and running before moving into the new house.

Top Places to Visit in Harris County

Even if you don’t want to purchase a house in Harris County, you can still enjoy its vibrant and exciting landmarks and cultural attractions. Here’s a quick guide to getting to know some of the most attractive locations in Harris County:

Harris County Property Tax

Harris County Property Tax

Photo by Erik Mclean from Pexels

Space Center Houston

Located in the city of Clear Lake, Space Center Houston is the official visitor centre for people who love to explore beyond the earth. Here you will learn all about the history of space exploration and know a few things about our exciting galaxy. You even get to see some actual spacecraft.

Buffalo Bayou Park

Buffalo Bayou Park is a 160-acre park that has become famous for its beautiful walking trails and bike paths. If you are looking for a place to spend the afternoon with your family and loved ones, Buffalo Bayou Park is your best bet. You can take a boat tour, join occasional concerts and festivals, or just relax and enjoy nature.

Houston Zoo

The Houston Zoo, located in Hermann Park is another popular destination for folks who love to spend time in an extraordinary habitat, featuring over 6,000 animals, including lions, tigers, and bears. Your children will love this place, especially with the wide variety of interactive exhibits and activities offered to visitors.

Museum of Fine Arts

Houston isn’t just famous for its breathtaking nature. It is also home to the Museum of Fine Arts, one of the largest art museums in the country that features over 70,000 works of art, ranging from paintings to sculptures, and decorative arts collected from all over the world. Make sure to check out their website before a visit and see if you can join their special programs.

Miller Outdoor Theatre

Located in Hermann Park, the Miller Outdoor Theatre offers an 8-month season of free outdoor concerts, plays, and other performances, hosting over 100 super exciting events each year including the famous Houston Shakespeare Festival and the Houston Symphony’s Summer Concert Series.

Bottom Line

There is little doubt that Harris County property tax can be a bit frightening. But the flip side of paying a considerable tax is living in a well-constructed community with fully equipped public facilities, schools, hospitals, etc.

Plus, Harris County hosts a diverse, thriving community of aspiring entrepreneurs and business owners who are willing to start a lucrative partnership with new brands in town, which gives you an exceptional opportunity to start a new chapter in life.

And if you need more help setting up your business, we can help you. We offer a broad array of virtual tour-based services, videography, photography, and rendering services. Just check out our website and watch our proven track record of success. Get in touch with us today.