Just Had A Property Tax Increase? Follow These Tips To Fight It
Did you just get a notification that your property taxes are going to increase because your home is being assessed at a higher value? If so, you'll likely be looking to appeal this increase to save you some money on your local property taxes. Here are some tips to help fight the increase.
Find Comparable Properties
The best way to find out if a property tax appeal is even worth your time is to start looking for comparable properties. This can be a bit hard to do since there are so many things that can be different about a home that can make them differ in price.
You need to look for the sales prices of homes sold within the past few years, and then see how they compare. The home should be approximately the same square footage with the same amount of bathrooms and bedrooms. The construction material should also be similar, so don't try to use a home with vinyl siding as a comparable if you have brick. Even the style of the home being the same can help a ton. Finally, make sure that the comparable property is built on the same size lot as your own. Even if the home is identical, having a larger yard can affect the price.
Each county will have their own requirements about how many comparable properties you need to find. In general, you'll need to find out 3 to 5 properties to proceed with the appeal.
Determine If An Appeal Is Worth It
Doing the research for comparable properties will give you a good idea if it is even worth it to appeal your property taxes. You may have discovered that property values that skyrocketed, and your increase is actually in line with what the market is seeing. If you do not want to make an appeal, just move on and pay the next tax bill as planned.
Hire A Lawyer
If you do want to lower your property taxes with an appeal, do yourself a huge favor and hire a lawyer. Property tax appeal lawyers do this all year round for various homes, and know the appeal process like the back of their hand. It's common for a lawyer to only charge you a small percentage of the taxes that you save for the first year. If they are unable to save you money, don't expect to have to pay for their services.