Property Tax to High? Fight it!

If you’ve received your annual property-tax bill and think it’s high, you might be right.  With home prices changes as much as they do, you could get widely varying prices based on who’s doing the appraisal or estimate.  Before you drop way to much, there are some steps you can take to try to fight it. After all, no one wants to pay more than they have to in taxes.

In most counties across the U.S., the first installment of property taxes is due on Nov. 1 and is considered delinquent Dec. 10. The final payment is due Feb. 1 and becomes delinquent on April 10.  If you think you were assessed to high, it’s important to act now.

The first step you’ll want to take is to contact a real estate agent.  You’ll want to get a report of the home’s true estimated value in the current market showing that your home was in fact estimated to high.  This will need to be supported by a list of homes recently sold in your local area that are comparable to yours and what they have sold for.  You can sign up for a free home valuation here.

Armed with this information, you’ll want to contact your local assessor to schedule a meeting to discuss the situation.  It is important to remember that they really do hold all the cards, so it’s very important to be courteous and polite. If you go in yelling and demanding you will not get anywhere and they will hold firm.  Remember, you catch more flies with honey. More than half of all property-tax disputes are settled at the first meeting between the homeowner and the assessor.

If you’re still not happy with the outcome, you can file for a new appeal with the local appeals board or even try suing the assessor (though this is not something that is recommended.)  For more information or to review your property’s information, call Helen today at 847.967.0022 or email [email protected].