Lowering your property taxes is possible
While paying off your mortgage means you no longer have to worry about paying principal or interest to your lender, property taxes will always be due. It appears that property taxes only go in one direction — up. There is no way to eliminate property taxes totally, but there are ways to minimize their impact. Discuss your situation with expert tax preparation in Sanford, Florida, to know best.
When you reside in a state with high property taxes, knowing how to fight for a reduction in those taxes is an important skill. The ten states with the highest property taxes, as reported by wallethub.com, are (from most costly to least):
- Rhode Island.
- New Hampshire
- New Jersey
We recommend the following three options:
- Make use of all available exemptions.
Depending on the jurisdiction, homeowners may be eligible for property tax breaks on their primary dwelling. Sometimes these exemptions apply to all homeowners and are called homestead exemptions. On other occasions, they are limited to a specific demographic, such as the elderly.
Find out what tax breaks are available in your area and work those reductions into your annual assessment or property tax bill. In some cases, the exemption can be applied retroactively over a longer time period. This won’t always work, but if you find an exemption you were unaware of, it’s worth a go. Make sure you understand moving forward.
- Learn the ins and outs of the assessment and appeals process for your property.
Timing for submitting an appeal or requesting a change in your property assessment can vary widely. The standard interval between assessments is three to five years. Occasionally, municipalities will issue assessments for new construction or reassessments if you’ve made major changes to your home (which is why they demand that you obtain building permits: to ensure that they’re aware of your improvements).
- Make sure your house is compared to others in the area.
Experts in filing appeals understand that they cannot do so alone. If you want to win an appeal, you need to establish that similar properties in the area were assessed lower than yours to make your case.
Fortunately, assessed values are a matter of public record, and nearly all the information you could want is available online (although, in some places, records have not been digitized yet). To find properties with reduced taxes, you should compare those comparable in size, age, amenities, and tax categorization.