Property owners nationwide are realizing that they must learn to demand a say in their assessments. Homeowners and property owners must look at their tax bills and assessments, just as they would their homeowners insurance, where they perform a periodic review. People are learning that challenging their tax assessment may be easier than they thought. The key to appealing your property tax bill is the knowledge of what determining criteria is important to successfully appeal their tax bill. Forming the wrong strategy and argument will be time consuming, very disappointing, and will not yield any results.
The appraisal system that the local tax assessors may utilize to value properties can be riddled with errors and accordingly result in distortion of market values. Learning how to intelligently and systematically challenge the assessment can prove to save hundreds, if not thousands of dollars a year.
Every month most families verify their phone bill, cable bill, electric bill, credit card bills, and etc., and are quick to dispute any discrepancies. However, most people rarely look as diligently at one of the largest annual obligations, their property tax bill, even though there is a high probability that the assessment is not accurate or too high. Each year homeowners typically make monthly installments into an escrow account to the mortgage service provider as part of their monthly mortgage payment and then the escrow holder directly sends payment to the local tax assessor office. The escrow providers do not check for accurate or fair market values. The escrow provider does nothing to verify or check tax bill for accuracy, but rather only to hold funds and make payments to the local taxing authorities.
Avoid sinking your hard earned money into over stated property values. Get an early start, begin reviewing your property tax bill before you receive it in the mail. There are time limitations for the appeal process and nuances that could trip you up. Each state and locality has different stipulations.
Alan Trauger is a Real Estate and Building Consultant for residential and commercial properties. Mr. Trauger has attained over 35 years of diversified experience and knowledge in construction, finance, and real estate. He has been involved in various facets of asset management, acquisitions, real estate work outs, property management, construction, inspection analysis, development, sales, leasing, and Ad Valorem tax appeal for over 25,000 single family and multi-family units and over 2.5 million square feet of commercial buildings. A Court Appointed Receiver and Expert Witness. An experienced and knowledgeable problem solver, understanding processes, and issues related construction and real estate.
Mr. Traugerís wide spectrum of experiences, education, research, teaching, and publication of previous articles, commercial real estate market sales comparables, and textbooks enables him to assist property owners through the property assessment and tax appeal process.