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Take a closer look at property valuations

Some surprising  and troubling things happened at the Hays Central Appraisal District (HaysCAD) this year. My own property value and that of numerous other property owners in my area were vastly increased. One property of a single acre, was increased from $23,000 to $158,000. Several properties doubled in value and another increased from about $12,000 to over $71,000.

My own property almost doubled in value.

Property appraisals for one land development company, the Blanton Family Limited Partnership, were a very different story.

The Blanton Family Limited Partnership, based in New Braunfels, owns at least 9 properties in the area between Scott Street and Old Stagecoach Road, on the west side of the original or “old” Kyle. 

These properties are all within Kyle city limits.  Most of the properties are unimproved (no homes or buildings) and none have any exemptions – since they are investment properties.   

The areas of these nine properties varies from 0.358 acres to 27.77 acres for a total of 56.5 acres.  The average appraised land value for the 56.5 acres is $10,600.  

I looked up seven (7) properties in my immediate area, along West Center Street and South Meyer St.  Each of these properties has a homestead exemption. That means that they should be appraised at lower rates than properties without the homestead or other exemptions. The average land value of these seven properties was $45,926 per acre, well over 4 times the value of the Blanton Family properties.

It seems that something is terribly wrong here. Why should the land of property development companies like the Blanton Family Limited Partnership be appraised at such low values? This pushes the tax burden onto individual property owners. That is not right and not fair.

This pattern could be widespread across Hays County.

The Hays Central Appraisal District and/or the County Tax Office needs to explain this. If there is no good explanation, there should be a full investigation.  The actions of the Hays CAD affects thousands of property owners.

Edward Sledge


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