Did you recently receive your property tax assessment? Were you shocked by how high the amount was? You may be wondering if the tax assessor made a mistake. The good news is you can challenge a property tax assessment. Nearly every county has a process in place to challenge property tax assessments. However, there's no guarantee your assessment will be successful. Below are a few tips to help you win your property tax challenge.
Get the Property Tax Card for You and Your Neighbors
Your local property tax office should have a tax card on file for your house and surrounding homes. The tax card contains all of the information the tax office has about your home. It includes the square footage of your home, the lot size, improvements you have made, and more. Examine your card to see if there is any incorrect information. They could have your lot larger than it is. They may have incorrect details about the interior of your home. Also, compare your card to those of your neighbors. You may find homes similar to yours that have lower tax assessments. You can use this information to challenge your assessment.
Give the Assessor Access to Your Home
Most tax departments make their assessment by reviewing the exterior of the home. They then make assumptions about the interior. However, it may be possible that there is information about the interior that would help your case. Maybe the inside is dated or it's not as large as it appears from the outside. A tour of the home could help the tax assessor reach a different decision about your home's value. Of course, it could also result in an increase in your assessment. There's a chance this strategy could backfire. It's wise to discuss this option with a property tax attorney before moving forward.
Hire an Attorney for Your Appeal
You can file an appeal with your local tax office. You have the option to represent yourself, but it may be wise to hire a property tax attorney. They can advise you on whether your appeal is likely to be successful and what steps you should take to improve your odds. They can help you prepare your appeal and gather all necessary documentation. And they can also represent you in a hearing. Your property tax attorney will know what arguments and strategies are likely to work and which ones are unlikely.
Ready to challenge your property tax assessment? Contact a property tax attorney in your area today.