The real estate market is seeing some of its strongest numbers since the housing crash of 2008, with home values peaking across the country. However, economists are also warning against mortgage interest rate hikes. With this in mind, now is a good time for homeowners to be proactive in making sure they’re not paying more than they should be for their property taxes. If you haven’t yet received your annual property tax assessment, be on the lookout for it and understand the steps you can take to ensure you’re paying a fair amount.
Understanding Your Assessment Letter
In Greenville and the surrounding areas, tax assessment letters go out annually to property owners; these letters include information on your property, lot size, millage rate, taxable market value and assessed value. Your tax is determined by multiplying the taxable market value by the rate (either 4% or 6%) to get the assessed value and then multiplying that by your millage rate. It is very important to double check the rate they use to determine your assessed value. For owner occupied homes, the rate is 4% and all others are 6%.
When you receive your assessment letter it is important to check the taxable market value, the rate, and the calculations used to derive your property tax.If there are any obvious errors on your assessment (such as an incorrect lot size or a miscalculation), the good news is that you won’t need to go through the formal appeals process. Instead, you’ll just need to contact the Tax Assessor’s office during business hours. They should be able to correct the information over the phone and send you a new assessment.
Appealing Your Property Tax
On the other hand, if all the information and calculations are technically correct but you want to dispute the taxable value of your property, then you will need to complete the formal appeals process. The good news? Statistics show that about half of all property tax appeals files are successful—so there is a good chance your efforts will pay off. Just understand that you could end up spending several hundred dollars in appealing your property tax, so you’ll want to make sure the payoff is worth the expense.
Specifically, appealing your tax will require you to:
- Submit comparable sales for several homes nearby
- Send in results of an independent appraisal
- Pay a small appeal fee
Overall, the process to appeal property taxes can be a bit tedious, but it might be worth it—especially in today’s market where home values are hitting record highs.
For more assistance with your Greenville real estate needs, contact The Parker Group today. Our team can help you with everything from development consulting to listing your current home and finding your dream home.