There are property owners who appeal to lower their property taxes and many of them win it too. Challenging the present tax that you are paying is something you can do if you believe you are paying a greater amount that you should. It might depend on the local government, but generally, assessment notices are sent in the beginning of the year. Once you get yours, you can check the last date for challenging the value. Additionally, there is one more thing you must remember when you get ready to challenge the tax amount – normally, only 80% of the market value would be considered when the tax amount is assessed.
- Looking at the property’s record card thoroughly
Once you receive your property’s record card, you must go through the same minutely. You can check this at the assessor’s website and if you find any discrepancy, bring it to light immediately. It might so happen that you are paying tax for a three bedroom house when you really have a two bedroom home.
- Curb appeal is good enough, but draw the line somewhere
Improving the curb appeal of your home might help you sell the property, but when your assessor comes along, you might land with a higher assessed value. Your assessor does this by comparing other houses in the neighborhood, so when your home looks the most attractive in the neighborhood, you could be paying for it. Keep that in mind when you are primping your curb.
- You can spy on your neighbors as well
You can look up the information of your home at the local town hall. Similarly, you can look up the assessment reports of other homes in your neighborhood as well. If you feel your tax report is high, then this is one of the ways to clarify it. Be sure to tally the reports of a home that is exactly like yours.
- Making structural changes to the house
It is advisable not to make structural changes to your home if you are not planning to sell it in the near future. There is no point in increasing your tax bill. Even adding a deck, a pool or a shed can make a difference to your tax bill. If making structural changes is imperative, then you can call the local tax department and get them to make a ball park estimate of the increase in tax amount.
- Walk the assessor
You can walk the assessor around the house and permit him to check the interior of the home. Unless interior access is allowed, the assessor will not be able to draw a fair tax bill.