If your opinion of the value of your property differs from the assessed value, you are strongly encouraged to contact the Assessing Department to discuss the matter. The staff will be more than ready to listen and if necessary to act to correct a problem. When questioning the assessment value, you should ask yourself three questions.
- Is the Assessing Department’s property description data regarding my property correct (sq. ft, number of baths etc.)?
- Is my assessed value in line with the sale prices on my street or in my neighborhood that took place in the year that was used to produce the assessments?(e.g. The sales from calendar years 2012 and 2013 will be used to produce the FY 15 assessments.
- Is my assessed value in line with others on the street or in my neighborhood?
Keep in mind the property factors that are important in arriving at an assessed value; e.g. recent sale prices, quality of construction, condition, your property’s neighborhood designation, building square footage and lot size. These are the most critical factors in the valuation process. There is a variety of information available both online and at the Assessing Department to help you determine whether your assessment is fair and equitable. The staff will be happy to assist you, and no appointment is necessary. If, after discussing the matter with the staff and researching the assessments of comparable properties within your area, a difference of opinion still exists, you may appeal your assessment by filing a timely abatement application.
If you wish to file for an abatement, please come by the Assessing Department and pick up an application as soon as your receive your third quarter tax bill. When filing for abatement, remember that you are appealing your assessment and not your taxes. APPLICATIONS ARE AVAILABLE JANUARY 1 IN THE OFFICE OR ONLINE.
You must pay your third quarter tax bill pending the resolution of your appeal.
The abatement application form is easy to fill out and the information you provide can be brief. But it is important to make a case to support your claim. That is, you need to provide reasons why you feel your assessment is out of line. For example, this can be done by pointing out errors in your property description; and /or by citing recent sales or other assessments which indicate your assessment is too high. In reviewing your abatement application we will consider carefully your specific concerns and comparisons.
Once the application is time-stamped by the Assessing Department, it cannot be added to, or changed or withdrawn.
If your abatement is granted
You will receive a letter indicating the amount of the abatement. To determine how much your assessment was reduced, divide the tax abatement by appropriate Fiscal Year tax rate. (For example, an abatement of $109.10 divided by the tax rate of 10.91 per thousand (.01091) equals an assessment reduction of $10,000.) Your abatement will normally be credited toward your fourth quarter tax bill. If your abatement is granted after your fourth quarter tax bill is paid, you will receive a refund check.
If you receive a notice indicating your application was denied. You may appeal to the State Appellate Tax Board (ATB) within three months of the Assessor’s decision.