Lower Your Michigan Property Tax Assessment

More than half of homeowners pay too much because their property has been wrongly assessed. I can research and correct mistakes, and show you how to navigate the appeals process
By: Alex The Appraiser
Jan. 9, 2009 - PRLog -- Michigan, home values are declining and for many who purchased their home when the values were at their peak, you may find a greater impact.

How it works

Property-tax increases largely are based on rising home values, not the increase of taxes by local governments. Different formulas are used to figure property taxes, but all depend on a home's assessed value. Some jurisdictions use a home's actual market value, while others use a percentage of a property's worth.

Whatever value is used, it's multiplied by the local tax rate to compute the property's bill. As home values increase, so do their assessed values. Homeowners end up paying more, even though the tax rate stays the same.

The National Taxpayers Union estimates that as much as 60% of taxable property in the United States is over assessed. This means many may be paying more in property taxes than necessary. "A property owner really should monitor his assessment every year, with a particular emphasis in a reassessment year, if applicable," says Franco A. Coladipietro of the law firm of Amari & Locallo in Chicago.

Many taxpayers fail to fight because they don't understand the process, or because they can't stomach doing the research and providing evidence to prove the assessment is wrong. Instead, they opt for what Glenn Straus, president of Straus & Co., a Dallas property-tax consulting firm, calls the cuss-and-pay system.
"They cuss the bill, and then they pay it," Straus says.

Now, with home values decreasing in many areas, owners may be stuck with a property assessment that's way too high. Appeal work isn't as difficult as homeowners fear. In fact, it's something most can do themselves with an appraisal report and some direction. Sure, the process is tedious and bureaucratic, but it's no more difficult than representing yourself in traffic or small-claims court.

The hearing is truly informal. It is an opportunity to meet with an appraiser and make sure the Assessor’s Office has the correct information and understands your concerns. Try to focus on the question, Is your property truly assessed at fair current market value?

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Fighting your Michigan Property Tax Assessment. Contact me for your Free No Obligation Professional Evaluation, to see if your home is one of the 60% over assessed and if tax appeal will benefit you.

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