Why Appeal Property Taxes For Your Home?

Property taxes are one of the single largest expenses faced by homeowners next to the mortgage itself. Many people get in trouble with their mortgage companies or wind up facing foreclosures because they are unable to pay their property taxes. Yet, most Americans do nothing to attempt to get these taxes lowered.

It is estimated that up to 70% of all property tax appeals are granted, still only 7% of all homeowners make an appeal to get their property taxes lowered. In this day and age, with property values plummeting all over the country, you might have your best chance yet to file an appeal on your property taxes.

So, why should you appeal your property tax assessment? Well consider an appeal on a $150,000 property. Let’s say that you win and your property tax is reduced by 5%. This means the assessed value would be reduced by $7500 and the property taxes reduced by $225, based upon a 3% taxation rate.

If you think that your property is being valued too high, you can appeal to your tax authority. You will probably be granted an opportunity for a hearing, at which time you must be prepared to back up your claims with solid documentation. To do this, you can work with a real estate agent who can offer you information on comparable properties in the vicinity and you can check out what those properties are costing in taxes. You can even get your property appraised. This will cost around $300 to $500, but it may be worth it if you feel strongly that you are being over taxed. It is good to have this sort of compelling evidence because local governments are not likely to reduce property taxes unless you can make a very persuasive argument for them doing so.

Even so, most property tax appeals are resolved at the informal hearing which is generally the first step in the appeals process.

Figuring that a property tax hearing generally takes about an hour, it is time well invested. When faced with unfair taxes, it is best to become the squeaky wheel. Too many people believe that you cannot fight city hall or that it is not even worth trying. Yet, what does it cost you beyond a little time and effort to go there and fight for your hard earned money? No one is better at representing your interests than you. So, if you feel that your property taxes are too high, don’t just whine about it like everyone else, do something about it, instead.