Free Money Finance dredged a fascinating statistic from Kiplingers that suggests 60% of homes are overvalued by assessors, and that 33% of tax appeals succeed. The stat comes from a dubious source, the National Taxpayers Union, described by the San Francisco Chronicle as the “the grand-daddy of the tax revolt organizations.” Assessments guide property taxes, which are universally reviled by homeowners. Even politicians, who suckle tax revenue with the vigor of a vampire on a vein, regularly crusade against property taxes during election season.
Appeals can usually be filed 30 to 60 days after you receive notice of an assessment. Start with the low-hanging fruit; an assessment can be easily overturned for basic mistakes like reporting the wrong number of rooms or square footage of your house. Also check utilities like Zillow.com to see how similar properties stack up against your home. If you think your house is overvalued, call your local assessor’s office’s and file an appeal. — CAREY GREENBERG-BERGER
60% of Homes Assessed for Too Much, 33% of Property Tax Appeals Succeed [Free Money Finance]
(Photo: David Gallagher)