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2016 Property Tax Appeals: What Can Be Done?
If there is a silent bill that you are responsible for that you probably don’t think about is your property tax. This is one bill that is thousands of dollars every year and depending on where you live can exceed $10,000! Just because home prices are relatively low still and holding steady, your property taxes are more than likely on the way up. In this article we will go through 2016 Property Tax Appeals and how you can try to reduce the amount you pay annually either directly to the county or in your monthly escrow with your mortgage.
2016 Property Tax Appeals: Review Your Bill
As with any important information, if you want to maximize your 2016 Property Tax Appeals you will need to do the following:
- Closely Review Your Property Tax Bill: Normally when you are looking at your property tax bill the shock comes from the amount due, but this isn’t the most important number. What you need to do for 2016 Property Tax Appeals is to pay attention to the assessed value of your home. The assessed value is the basis for what your tax percentage is calculated against. The other item you need to double-check is the rate of taxation and you can confirm this with your local assessor’s office.
- Confirm Tax Assessment: Even though your home assessment is only done every 3 years or so, you need to make sure that when it is completed that you ensure it is the proper value. If you are in an area where home values are decreasing, it is not a bad idea to get your house re-assessed as part of the 2016 Property Tax Appeals.
- Understand Your Assessment: Your understanding in how assessments work is essential in your 2016 Property Tax Appeals. You need to know when assessments are performed and how the value is determined. Understanding this will help you make your argument in your 2016 Property Tax Appeals.
- Compare Similar Properties: This is some research you can do yourself for your 2016 Property Tax Appeals. Since property taxes are public knowledge, it should be easy for you to find someone with a similar home and see what their home was assessed at and the property tax they are paying. If you can find a handful of properties in your neighborhood that are assessed at a similar value, it will help you make your case for an appeal and a correction of your taxes.
- Ensure Proper Exemptions and Freezes: If you are doing your homework properly you will ensure that your property has the proper homeowner’s exemption or a freeze for seniors and other eligible individuals. Normally these can take thousands off your assessed value so if you forgot to apply them in prior years, you should be able to get them applied retroactively and receive a refund.
2016 Property Tax Appeals: Next Steps
After you have gone through your fact finding and you believe that you have a valid case for an appeal, go through the following steps to request your property tax reassessment.
- Prepare The Appeal: While the proper specifics can be had for your 2016 Property Tax Appeals on the local assessor’s website, here is normally what is included: Your argument and comparable properties for support.
- Get A Professional Opinion: These days it is rather easy to find attorneys in your area who specialize in property tax appeals. If you aren’t 100% sure with the case you are submitting, make sure you enlist a true professional to advise if an appeal is needed and how to present the best case. Normally the fee for a professional is 30-40% of your first year savings if the appeal is approved.
- When In Doubt Appeal Again: There is no limit to doing appeals every year and if you strongly feel you have a case, keep appealing. Yes it may cost you some money to get it done, but if the end result is a lower assessment, then by all means try.
2016 Property Tax Appeals: Give It A Shot
For your 2016 Property Tax Appeals, the idea is normally that it can’t hurt, so just go ahead and give it a shot. If you don’t get any attorneys involved, it won’t cost you any money and the worst thing that can happen is your appeal get denied. As I always like to say, if you don’t ask, they can’t tell you “No.” Good luck!
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