Lower your tax bill liability

If you feel like your property tax bill is on the high side, it very well may be. Depending on your area, your current tax bill could be based on your home’s value from as much as 5 years ago.

Appealing the amount of your bill may seem like a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be. The process can actually be quite simple, if you know what you are doing.

Look for mistakes.
Often, the amount you pay is based on a quick evaluation of your home from the outside.  There may be features attributed to your home that don’t actually exist. A simple mistake of an extra room or a larger lot size can be adding extra dollars to your tax bill. Making your tax assessor aware of the mistake may almost immediately lower your bill.

To view your property record, check with your local assessor’s office.

Arm yourself with information.
Before an appeal can be effective, you’ll need to be able to prove that the value based on your home is incorrect. What qualifies as proof will change from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, so be sure to check what you need in your area. You may need to either hire an independent appraiser to evaluate your home or come up with values of comparable houses in your neighborhood. To find comparable homes, you may want to enlist the help of a realtor or check websites such as zillow.com.
In most cases, there should be a difference in values of at least 10% before your bill may be adjusted.

Additional resources :

www.realtor.org
www.naifa.com
www.zillow.com

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