Property tax dispute: Should you appeal your property assessment in Winston County, Alabama?
Homeowners in Winston County are fully familiar with the burden of real estate tax; those that have actually invested their lives in locations where these taxes are generally high feel the impact more than many. The impact of these taxes can be even worse for those who have actually lived in their residential properties for a long time, as they have actually witnessed firsthand the taxes increase year after year. But the bad news is perhaps overpaying your property taxes and be entirely unaware. Here are some typical factors individuals are overpaying their properties tax.
Is your Winston County property over evaluated?
A high house valuation is the primary factor that people appeal the dollar amount they are paying on their property taxes. In most cases, people feel that the evaluation put on their home does not reflect the market value ought to they try to sell it today. The easiest method to find this out is to get in touch with some local realtors. They should have the ability to inform you the range of values comparable residential properties are selling for in your area. Remember, the actual value of your home will not be known until a sale is finally closed. When you receive your home valuation, you will be given a 30-day window in which to appeal any evaluation. Otherwise, you will need to wait up until next year to appeal.
Can you get the real value of your property?
It is probably worthwhile to call a regional real estate agent or your assessor in Winston County, Alabama. If you feel your residential property has been significantly miscalculated, a professional evaluation might prove extremely affordable in the long run
Many do not realize you are not entitled to challenge your real estate tax bill directly in Alabama, but you can certainly lodge an assessed value appeal, remember that no matter how you feel about the expense, if you do not pay, it can lead to the foreclosure of your home.
To effectively appeal, you will require to show at least three equivalent homes that have been evaluated at a lower assessment value. The closer these homes remain in size and area to yours, the higher the chance of success you will have on appeal
Specific situations that may have minimized the value of your residential property
If there are exceptional scenarios that directly result in the decrease of your residential property value and these are not shown in your evaluation, these are clear premises for appeal. Just provide evidence of these circumstances, and the appeals process should be straightforward.
You have just recently bought your residential property in Winston County, Alabama for less than the assessment value
If you have evidence of the purchase price of your home or you possess a recent appraisal that does not reflect the dollar amount your house has been valued at by the assessor, this is clear premises for appeal. If a professional evaluates your residential property much lower than that of the assessed value, this is considerable proof to back your appeal. You can always order a brand-new appraisal despite the fact that this will cost a couple of hundred dollars it could be worth it in the end. The bright side is that you do not need to accept a high real estate assessment; you can always appeal and get them decreased in the process.
How do you appeal your home assessed value in Winston County?
Every State has their own requirements for home assessed value appeals. One thing they all have in common; the only groungs that they will accept is that your property has actually been assessed higher than itreal market value. As your Winston County real estate taxes are calculated basically by multiplying the evaluated value of your home by its locations set tax rate, you do not have any premises to appeal the tax rate just the home assessed value. Your only opportunity of approach is to show your home is not worth the value the assessor thinks.
Upon receiving your home assessed value, your county will give you a predetermined window in which to appeal. These can differ significantly from 30 to 90 days so your county appeal deadline is the first thing you want to determine. However, keep in mind if you miss this due date there’s absolutely nothing you can do, and you will be required to wait a more year for a chance to appeal your house assessment!
The fastest and simplest way to submit an appeal in Winston County is to do so on the website of your county, town or city. The costs associated with each request can vary based on the preliminary value of your home assessed value. The expense of an appeal varies could be as little as $10 to $100, depending upon where you live.
The first step in the procedure is to make sure that your regional tax assessor has included the proper house information to start with. Sometimes, details may be incorrect such as, homes have been raised with basements that do not exist; such examples are wrong and might result in your house value being reduced instantly. The more information that you can gather regarding why you feel your home is miscalculated, the stronger your case for an appeal.
If there are no recognizable issues with the details on your property, you will need to find details of similar homes in your area that are assessed at a lower value. This will be the most convenient method to show your case. You will want to discover 3 or four residential properties that are all the same size as yours, in the exact same area, whose value is much less lower than your property; this will be your grounds for appeal.
In some locations, you’ll be asked to go to a property appeal hearing, so if this does occur, do not be frightened. In general, these hearings are just contacted us to permit you to present the information you have actually gathered in support of your claim. You will likewise be allowed to analyze any incorrect info that might be on file about your home. You need to be ready for this hearing and have all the data you‘ve gathered about comparable houses and sales of similar houses in Winston County.
Be prepared for the tax assessor to argue his or her counter-argument. Among the most popular ones here is that your home in question is more modern-day than the ones you’re comparing it to. Be ready for such an argument because if you get to this point, the Assessor believes you are not deserving of a reduction in assessed value and will want to win his/her case by elaborating on the facts to support their position. It’s is always essential to keep in mind that there are no additional penalties attached to filing an appeal; the worst result being that your home assessment is the same.
Is it worth submitting an appeal?
If you really feel that your home has actually been overvalued, an effective appeal of your Winston County property assessment might lead to significant cost savings. If there are only a few hundred dollars of potential cost savings, it may not be worth your time. You also need to consider that the hearing could be arranged during a workday, which might result in a loss of profits. Find out as soon as possible when the hearings take place, and will it be a teleconference or in-person hearing. This way you can make the appropriate arrangements to minimize wage loss.
Property Tax Valuation - How to Calculate
To prorate means to divide something so that each person pays her fair share. The real estate term for dividing expenses that are paid after they are incurred or are prepaid is called prorations. For example, sometimes real estate taxes are paid in arrears. This means that they are paid currently for the year before. The practical effect of this is that the buyer will in many cases get a tax bill for time when she did not own the house and therefore was not responsible for the taxes.
An example will make this easier to understand. Let's say you closed on the house you bought on August 31, 2007. You are responsible for 4 months worth of real estate taxes for 2007. Unfortunately, the tax bill does not arrive until May of 2008. This is where prorations come into play. At the closing, you will be responsible for 1/3 of the tax bill that will arrive in May, 2008. That means the seller will give you, the buyer, an amount equal 2/3 of the agreed to prorated tax amount and you will pay the real estate tax bill.
The tricky part comes about because real estate taxes always seem to be going up. This is usually handled as part of the negotiations. The buyer will ask for an amount based on the seller's last year's tax bill plus a small percentage, usually 5 or 10% extra, and some agreement will be reached.
An unusually large increase in the real estate taxes due to a reassessment, rate increase or both can further complicate matters. With the gains in real estate prices in the recent past, many taxing bodies have become eager to capture at least part of that gain. So it is buyer beware and make sure you check with the local taxing authorities.
Prorations can also be used to adjust for any expenses that have been paid by the seller ahead of time, such as prepaid mortgage interest, prepaid casualty insurance, or such items as rent or utility bills.
© 2007 Complete Books Publishing, Inc.