Handling Property Tax Appeals
You may wonder why your commercial or residential property taxes are so high. It is because they are used for a great deal of services in your area that require public funding. Your property tax is determined by six basic factors:
- The cost of municipal and county programs and services
- The cost of your local public schools
- The availability of other revenue to cover those costs
- The extent of the presence of tax-exempt properties in your municipality
- The total value of all the taxable properties in your municipality
- The market value of the property that you own (assessment)
The most important element in determining whether your property taxes are too high would be the property assessment. An assessment is an opinion of value of your property by a licensed professional (municipal tax assessor) who then multiplies your assessed value by the municipal general tax rate.
Therefore, one doesn’t necessarily appeal property taxes, but rather the property’s assessed value in an effort to reduce the taxes. For an assessment to be considered excessive, it must be proven that it does not fairly represent one of two standards:
- True market value standard — 100 percent of true market value of previous tax year
- Common level range standard — Adjusted to consider external factors (inflation, depreciation, income generation, recession, etc.)
Obtain Professional Assistance
Our attorneys at Robinson & Robinson consult with a professional appraiser who uses tax valuation formulas, comparable properties and citywide tax information, among other metrics, to render an expert opinion for either residential or commercial real estate taxes. With that, we can file an appeal to the County Board of Taxation on behalf of the resident.
Remember – the deadline for most tax appeals is in the spring of each year. Any appeal must be filed before the specific deadline for your county.