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Are you looking for a way to reduce your property taxes in Ohio? Do you believe that your property is worth less than the assessment completed by your county? You have options available to you to appeal an auditor’s evaluation of the value of your property. At Heban, Murphree, & Lewandowski, our firm has extensive knowledge and decades of experience reducing taxpayer burdens by challenging your property’s valuation.
The property tax appeals process is a valuable tool for decreasing your property tax payment and saving you substantial amounts of money. The process is often complicated and requires a significant amount of time and experience to properly complete. A property tax dispute lawyer knows the deadlines to file appeals, has the tools and knowledge to complete property research, and knows how to build a compelling case to reduce a property’s assessed value.
A property tax dispute lawyer can represent their client’s property tax dispute at all levels. They have the experience to expedite paperwork through the most effective avenues, file documents correctly with the necessary governmental agencies, and clear all deadlines. Without a property tax dispute lawyer, a client will have difficulty reducing a property’s assessed value. A knowledgeable attorney is a valuable investment.
When a county values its real estate, it is done on a mass scale. The vast majority of properties undergo a brief visual inspection from the exterior. Very seldom are any interior inspections done. Due to the small number of auditors and many properties in each county in Ohio, a thorough examination is nearly impossible. An accurate property valuation requires attention to detail and precision, and mass inspections are neither detailed nor precise.
A standard bank appraisal wouldn’t trust a mass county audit, and neither should you. Bank appraisals require both interior and exterior examinations in addition to analysis of similar sales to reach an accurate property value. It is up to you and your legal counsel to question the county’s valuation and bring forth evidence that indicates why and how it is incorrect. If you believe the county’s valuation of your property is inaccurate, don’t hesitate to contact Heban, Murphree, & Lewandowski for a thorough analysis of your situation and the best path forward to lower your property taxes.
The appeals process can be tricky, lengthy, and has strict deadlines that require adherence. A knowledgeable law firm uses probative evidence to indicate the fair market value of your property. This evidence includes proof of a recent sale that includes independent buyers and sellers acting in their self-interest (no sale between family members, for example). These parties should both have equal access to information related to the transaction.
An independent appraisal conducted by a qualified appraiser is also an essential piece of evidence. Your law firm can help select a qualified appraiser who can also act as an expert witness during your property tax appeal. The independent appraiser must defend their valuation by using either an income approach, a sales comparison approach, a cost approach, or any combination of the three.
A property tax appraisal dispute may also arise if your home was subject to a natural disaster like a flood. If, for instance, your home was flooded, its value likely went down. The appraisal carried out by your county may not recognize the damage, and you may receive a much higher property tax bill than is appropriate. At Heban, Murphree, & Lewandowski, we’ll fight to make sure your taxes are adjusted accordingly.
You have four steps to consider if you feel the valuation of your property is not correct.
1) The Informal Value Review: During this review, you will have a hearing with an appraiser who works for the county. You will be tasked with presenting documentation that reflects the value of your property. You and your evidence are then at the whim of the review process.
2) The Board of Revision: All taxpayers can file a real-property-valuation complaint with your local county board of revision.
3) The Ohio Board of Tax Appeals: If the board of revision’s findings are not to your liking, you can submit an additional appeal to the board of tax appeals.
4) The Ohio Supreme Court: Your last course of action is to appeal to the Ohio Supreme Court’s previous decisions.
Don’t go it alone. Reach out to Heban, Murphree, & Lewandowski today for a free consultation.