Property taxes can absorb a sizeable amount of your budget and leave you wondering if you have overpaid. Since paying taxes is a law, you may feel helpless knowing that if you do not pay, you will face repercussions.
Despite your tax obligations, you have the right to appeal your property taxes if you feel a discrepancy has influenced your rate. Here are some things to keep in mind to improve your chances of a satisfactory outcome.
Know your timing
You cannot appeal your property tax at any given time. In fact, you only have certain windows when you can file an appeal. How long you have to do this depends on where you live. Know what the restrictions are within your county so you can avoid the disappointment of missing the deadline.
You may also want to factor any additional fees into your budget too. Sometimes, certain cities will require you to pay a fee in order to appeal your property taxes. Because most city officials require these fees upfront, you may want to time your appeal appropriately so you can satisfy those requirements. Keep in mind that officials will not return these funds even if they deny your appeal.
Do your research
Understanding how an appeal works can help you strategize a way to create a compelling description of why your taxes are too high. According to The Motley Fool, when you appeal your property taxes, you are only disputing your home’s assessed value. Not the tax rate.
As you prepare your appeal, highlight any discrepancies you notice that may have caused your home’s overassessment. For example, if the assessor reported that your home has a finished basement when it is not actually finished, you may have some luck on your side. You will also want to do ample research about property values in your area so you can use comparison to show how your tax rates are substantially higher than other, similar properties.
Because filing a tax appeal is both time-sensitive and, at times, a challenging process, you may want to hire an attorney to help you.