1st Tax Appeals
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1st Tax Appeals (by NE [PA]) Aug 11, 2017 9:29 AM
       1st Tax Appeals (by razorback_tim [AR]) Aug 11, 2017 10:04 AM
       1st Tax Appeals (by Homer [TX]) Aug 11, 2017 10:28 AM
       1st Tax Appeals (by DanNBos [MA]) Aug 11, 2017 10:42 AM
       1st Tax Appeals (by Nicole [PA]) Aug 11, 2017 11:18 AM
       1st Tax Appeals (by RB [MI]) Aug 11, 2017 12:56 PM
       1st Tax Appeals (by Frank [NJ]) Aug 11, 2017 1:09 PM
       1st Tax Appeals (by Ed [PA]) Aug 11, 2017 5:05 PM
       1st Tax Appeals (by Tony [NJ]) Aug 12, 2017 3:56 AM

1st Tax Appeals (by NE [PA]) Posted on: Aug 11, 2017 9:29 AM

I'm going to be filing my first tax appeals on 3 properties.

Any tips? --174.201.xx.xx

1st Tax Appeals (by razorback_tim [AR]) Posted on: Aug 11, 2017 10:04 AM

I've done appeals here a few times with success.

Some of the issues I had were with square footage being overstated. In these cases I had documentation of the square footage in the form of a house plan. For ones where I disputed the valuation on a per sq ft basis I pulled sales out of public records and took that info with me. There was one other case where I had copies of an appraisal from a refi on the property. Supporting documentation is the key. --70.182.xx.xx

1st Tax Appeals (by Homer [TX]) Posted on: Aug 11, 2017 10:28 AM

Take a pic of every single defect you can find in the house. Take an estimate of what a yellow page company would charge to fix it. How is the roof? Aged? Get an estimate on a new one. My county gives us comp addresses ahead of the hearing. I research those closed listings and print out how great those are, such as granit counter tops, new roofs, new ac, etc. this yet I was able to get over 400k in reductions, on well over 700k of increased values. We are taxed at 2.7 percent, so I was able to save close to 12 k of property taxes. --75.141.xxx.xxx

1st Tax Appeals (by DanNBos [MA]) Posted on: Aug 11, 2017 10:42 AM

Get your favorite Realtor to pull you appropriate comps on your properties.

The folks at the Luzerne County Court loved them when I appealed. Make sure these comps are on the Realtor letterhead.

They said I was very prepared and organized. They were not impressed by some of my colleagues pulling stuff off of the internet, Zillow etc. Sloppy

Or you can get an appraisal. The Realtor is free and perhaps you can utilize their services in the future as payback. --98.216.xx.x

1st Tax Appeals (by Nicole [PA]) Posted on: Aug 11, 2017 11:18 AM

I believe David Krulac is the king of successful assessment appeals in PA... maybe contact him. --72.95.xx.x

1st Tax Appeals (by RB [MI]) Posted on: Aug 11, 2017 12:56 PM

Ask to see / review, the City / Township assessment card.

I bought a property that showed a 2 stall garage,

in ground pool and a hot tub room, recorded on the City Card.

It aint there I said.

The City Assessor asked to follow me home.

Nope, he said.

It aint there.

An adjustment was made. --71.13.xx.xxx

1st Tax Appeals (by Frank [NJ]) Posted on: Aug 11, 2017 1:09 PM

I've done 3 and the first thing I did was to read the State Statutes that govern the process and follw those guidelines.

Then I would go to Tax Court to watch the process.

Also would make sure what CLASS of sold Comps are allowed to be used.

Some jurisdictions might specifically exclude using estates, foreclosures or other judicial sales as comps.

Good luck --173.63.xx.xx

1st Tax Appeals (by Ed [PA]) Posted on: Aug 11, 2017 5:05 PM

I've done several dozen successfully with my best assessment reduction over $300K. Several methods work:

1. Best - Pay for an appraisal from a PA licensed appraiser. He will provide recent comps adjusted to come up with an appropriate value of your house. PA license they really can't argue with the value he sets on the property.

2. Brokers opinion report. Real estate broker pulls comps and adjusts the values to come up with a value for your house. Doesn't charge as much as an appraiser, doesn't carry as much weight. Can also use a real estate agent but has even less weight than broker.

3. Purchase price of the house if it was bought within the past three years and you didn't pull a building permit for major renovation.

4. Comparable sales pulled by yourself. Sales should be within past three years and within one mile of the house. Can use Zillow or other internet search to find the sales. Hopefully your county has assessment information on line to be able to compare the property attributes, Zillow has some info but not as much as the county. You can go to the county building to get property cards owned by you or not. Comparison includes:

a. Square footage - by far the highest value attribute. Square feet of living area is worth significantly more than basement or attic.

b. Grade of exterior can swing value significantly

1. Stone or other fancy finish

2. Brick or hardiplank

3. Vinyl siding or wood

4. Wood - old style painted

5. Insulbrick

c. Condition - another that can vary the value, definitely very subjective. Most people focus on pointing out all the little things wrong but I've never felt that swung the assessor more than a little bit. They look at

1. excellent

2. good

3. average

4. poor

d. lot size

e. garage integral or detached, other out buildings never swings more than $10K to $15K

f. porch or deck space by square feet

g. Number of baths or sometimes plumbing fixtures, only worth a few thousand

h. fireplace only $1K to $1.5K

* Pull your property card and look for mistakes to argue.

5. Compare your assessed value to your neighbors, not a high success rate but sometimes works --96.236.xxx.xxx

1st Tax Appeals (by Tony [NJ]) Posted on: Aug 12, 2017 3:56 AM

I've done appeals in PA and NJ. Check all the rules for comparables etc. For instance you CAN use assessments of other comps to support your argument in PA but not in NJ.

Check the data the assessor's office has on your property as others here have suggested here. Square footage, type of construction (ex: brick more valuable than frame, hw heat more valuable than Hot air, etc. Property data (w photos) should be available online unlike NJ.

Maybe this was a local Northampton County experience but it was very difficult to interact with the board. When I offered testimony and asked for a reaction to gage a consensus, they would only replay " do you have anything to present?"

Deadline for filing appeals in PA varies by county, but is April 1st statewide in NJ.

Good luck.


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