5 Tips to Help Your Property Tax Appeal

While many people enjoy the benefits of homeownership, some of those individuals also find themselves wanting to appeal their property taxes. In fact, the National Taxpayers Union estimates that 30 to 60 percent of properties are over-assessed.

However, homeowners who are considering property tax appeals should be prepared with all the necessary information.

Homeowner feesGet an Appraisal

While consumers might have a good idea of whether or not their property taxes are too high, it’s much easier to make the case if there’s a professional appraisal to back up the argument. Homeowners should consider having an independent appraisal prepared and present the appraisal report to the assessor because appraisers are third-party experts who provide credible opinions of value.

In a perfect world, the assessed value of a particular property would match market value if that is the regulatory intent of the particular jurisdiction’s property assessment law. But assessors aren’t able to look at each property individually every year as an appraiser might for mortgage financing, employee relocation or other single-property appraisal assignments.

Determine the Tax Liability

The amount of property taxes due to local municipalities is typically based on the location and assessed value of the home. Consumers also should understand that the assessed value of a property can change over time if, for example, improvements are made.

Understand the Difference among States

There can be a big difference in property taxes from county to county and state to state. Regardless of where one lives, it’s important to know how property taxes are calculated locally and to follow all related legal requirements.

Learn What Property Taxes Support

Does the local community have above-average schools? Are municipal workers paid good salaries? How much industry and tourism is there in the area? These factors, and others, all can contribute to elevated property tax bills.

Don’t Guess with the IRS

Many homeowners recently filed tax returns with the Internal Revenue Service. Looking ahead to future tax filings, it’s important to understand that the IRS has specific rules about the deductibility of property taxes.

There can be different stages of tax appeals based on the municipality, and homeowners should check with their assessor’s office or a local appraiser who can provide expertise.

Appraisers, leave a comment below with your property tax appeal strategies.