Author Topic: Property tax reassessment . . .  (Read 1196 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

jpcher

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 8678
Property tax reassessment . . .
« on: February 09, 2013, 03:53:06 PM »
I hope this doesn't fall under legal advice . . . I'm looking more for "How To" suggestions/advice.

Maybe this should go in the "Might be a stupid question" thread, because this is probably something that I should know how to do, but I didn't want to derail that thread.

Has anybody ever had their property taxes reassessed? What are the steps involved? What do you need to know? Is the process a huge headache? Is this something that you can do yourself or do you need to hire a lawyer?

I've had several mailings stating "We can reduce your property taxes! (for a fee.)" I don't know if these are scammers or if they are legit.

I just received my first installment property tax bill and the taxes have skyrocketed. Taxes have been steadily going up the past few years, and I believe that's because of the smaller, older homes (which I have one of) are being bought as tear-downs with huge houses being built on the lots and sell for astronomical prices.

I do live in a desirable location, but do my property taxes really have to reflect on the re-builds selling prices?


Any help as to how to proceed would be appreciated.

Thank you!

trailgrrl

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 911
Re: Property tax reassessment . . .
« Reply #1 on: February 09, 2013, 03:55:00 PM »
Where I live taxes are assessed by the County Assessor's Office.  If you go to their webpage there are usually instructions for requesting/contesting assessments.

Good Luck !

mmswm

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 2243
Re: Property tax reassessment . . .
« Reply #2 on: February 09, 2013, 04:08:30 PM »
Where I live taxes are assessed by the County Assessor's Office.  If you go to their webpage there are usually instructions for requesting/contesting assessments.

Good Luck !

This. :)
Some people lift weights.  I lift measures.  It's a far more esoteric workout. - (Quoted from a personal friend)

CakeBeret

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 4261
Re: Property tax reassessment . . .
« Reply #3 on: February 09, 2013, 05:05:32 PM »
Contact your county assessor; don't go through a third party. IME they like to make you jump through many hoops in hopes that you give up.

A relative recently bought a house for $35k. The house had previously been assessed for over $150k, so you can imagine that the taxes were absurdly high. The relative appealed to the assessor, jumped through all the hoops, and got the assessed value lowered significantly, which in turn lowered the taxes.
"From a procrastination standpoint, today has been wildly successful."

magicdomino

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 4722
Re: Property tax reassessment . . .
« Reply #4 on: February 09, 2013, 05:44:19 PM »
Yup, varies by county.  One of the local counties has a very narrow window to challenge your assessment, my county gives you several months.

One thing to point out is that a county tax assessor isn't looking at all of the same things as a real estate agent.  The tax assessor doesn't care about paint colors or curb appeal or whether you cleared the kitchen table.   Tax assessors know that some people deliberately let their house look like a dump in hopes of getting the assessment lowered.  Instead, he or she will be looking at structural differences between your house and nearby houses that have recently sold.  Do similar houses in your neighborhood have three full baths, and yours has one full and two half-baths?  Do they have a two car garage, and you have a one car version?  Is your lot slightly smaller, or are you located near an eyesore?  Did the foreclosure down the street sell for half of what your home is assessed?

For years, we lived next door to the worst house in the neighborhood.  It was unfinished on the outside, and the owner left it that way when he realized that his taxes were much lower.  So, every year that the county tried to raise our property tax, my mother would pack up her photos and take it to the tax board.    A couple of times the tax assessor himself agreed with her after he came out and looked.   :)

wolfie

  • I don't know what this is so I am putting random words here
  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 7083
Re: Property tax reassessment . . .
« Reply #5 on: February 09, 2013, 07:02:24 PM »
Go to your tax office and see what the procedure is. I live in a small town and I just go to the property tax office with a copy of an appraisal and talk to the person in charge. There is also paperwork I can fill out if I want to do it via mail. But each county/state will have a different process so you will want to make sure that you get the right one. It shouldn't be hard - I know a few people who have talked to their tax person and noone ever thought it was such a pain that it would be worth hiring someone to do it.

DollyPond

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 679
Re: Property tax reassessment . . .
« Reply #6 on: February 09, 2013, 11:23:00 PM »
If a private company is claiming they can lower your property taxes (especially for a fee) then it's a scam!  Your taxes can only be lowered by your county or township and only after an appeal.

jpcher

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 8678
Re: Property tax reassessment . . .
« Reply #7 on: February 10, 2013, 03:42:12 PM »
Thank you for your replies! ;D

I did some on-line searching through the tax assessors office web site and it looks like I'm not taking advantage of 2 exemptions that I qualify for.

PLUS! The assessed value of my home? If I could really sell it for that amount, I'd buy me a condo in town for cash and be living pretty. (Not really, I do like my home.) I do understand the value of location, but I wouldn't pay that much for my home. It's not in disrepair or run down, or anything like that . . . it's just really small.

It also seems that reassessment for my property is closed at this time. It was difficult to decipher when I can put in an appeal, so I think I'll give them a call tomorrow and talk to a live person.


If a private company is claiming they can lower your property taxes (especially for a fee) then it's a scam!  Your taxes can only be lowered by your county or township and only after an appeal.

The private company (a tax property lawyer) is offering to do the leg/paper work and the fee is a one time percentage from the annual tax savings. If I don't get a tax savings they will not charge me. They claimed that they can lower my taxes by $1,600/year plus they said that I'm eligible for a refund for past taxes which were over-paid.

It's tempting.


There's a lot to learn. I'm surprised at myself (chastising myself?) that I've never looked into this before.


Thank you all for pointing me in the right direction.


siamesecat2965

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 8757
Re: Property tax reassessment . . .
« Reply #8 on: February 11, 2013, 09:21:56 AM »
Thank you for your replies! ;D

I did some on-line searching through the tax assessors office web site and it looks like I'm not taking advantage of 2 exemptions that I qualify for.

PLUS! The assessed value of my home? If I could really sell it for that amount, I'd buy me a condo in town for cash and be living pretty. (Not really, I do like my home.) I do understand the value of location, but I wouldn't pay that much for my home. It's not in disrepair or run down, or anything like that . . . it's just really small.

It also seems that reassessment for my property is closed at this time. It was difficult to decipher when I can put in an appeal, so I think I'll give them a call tomorrow and talk to a live person.


If a private company is claiming they can lower your property taxes (especially for a fee) then it's a scam!  Your taxes can only be lowered by your county or township and only after an appeal.

The private company (a tax property lawyer) is offering to do the leg/paper work and the fee is a one time percentage from the annual tax savings. If I don't get a tax savings they will not charge me. They claimed that they can lower my taxes by $1,600/year plus they said that I'm eligible for a refund for past taxes which were over-paid.

It's tempting.


There's a lot to learn. I'm surprised at myself (chastising myself?) that I've never looked into this before.


Thank you all for pointing me in the right direction.

I'd stay away from any third party who claims they can reduce your tax. I am not a homeowner, but I'd wonder how they can be so sure, and quote a specific amount. I'd say your best bet is deal directly with your town/county and the tax assessor. it may mean more work for you, but if it were me, I'd rather have control over it, than handing it over to someone else, ANS paying them to do it.

joraemi

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 3798
  • Crystal of Enchantment - my current project
Re: Property tax reassessment . . .
« Reply #9 on: February 11, 2013, 09:46:18 AM »
POD to ignoring the third party.  I always think where this kind of stuff is concerned it's worth it to jump the hoops yourself so that you understand every step of the process and how value was determined.  Plus - you usually learn a few things along the way that will be helpful to you in some other way down the pike, kwim?




Courage is the price life  exacts for granting peace.  ~Amelia Earhart~

MurPl1

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 999
Re: Property tax reassessment . . .
« Reply #10 on: February 14, 2013, 11:15:06 PM »
We got the third party notice many years ago.  They actually just filed our homestead exemption for us and got us the refund for the few years we were eligible.  Of course they took part of the savings we got back.  I don't regret doing it because we wouldn't even have realized we could take that exemption if we hadn't got the letter and we still got back more than we would have been.

But they don't do anything for you that you can't do yourself.  You're really just paying for them to do the legwork.  And the OP has already done some research and could probably just take it the next few steps themself. :)