The responsibility of paying property taxes is one of the greatest burdens faced by homeowners today — particularly those who are getting on in age. In addition to being one of the regular hidden costs associated with owning a home, property taxes can also increase at a drastic rate depending on the amount that your home’s value increases over time. This can make it increasingly difficult to afford a home.
Fortunately, there are a number of tax relief services available from various state governments and non-profit organizations, as well as local exemptions that can help you to make your property taxes more affordable. While many homeowners do not realize that these options are available, here is your opportunity to learn about the ways in which you can lower your tax burden!
Start By Reassessing Your Property’s Value
So, how exactly is the amount of your property tax determined? Well, your property tax is calculated according to your property’s estimated cost. Bear in mind that this isn’t your property’s actual worth- in fact, if you were to sell your property, you would probably receive a lower price for it. On the other hand, because a property’s value is not set in stone, you could have its value reassessed as a means of lowering your property taxes.
In order to begin the process of getting your property’s value reassessed, you need to reach out to a real estate appraiser or an agent who has experience in market estimates. By comparing your home to other similar homes in the area and their estimated values, the assessor will come up with his or her own estimate of your home’s worth. Having your home reassessed is a simple and incredibly helpful solution for lowering your property taxes. This is especially true if your home’s value was incorrectly assessed in the past (for example, the size of your property was incorrectly measured).
Check Out Some Property Relief Programs
Another easy way to reduce your property taxes is by checking if you qualify for a property tax relief program. These programs are available throughout the United States and vary depending on your state. By utilizing one of these programs, you could benefit from tax freezes (which cap your property tax at a certain amount), a tax reduction, or even have your tax eliminated depending on the assistance for which you qualify.
Search your county, city, or state in order to find out what kinds of tax relief services you are eligible to benefit from. By doing so, you could save thousands of dollars on your property taxes.
Search For a Tax Exemption
In some cases, you could go one step further than getting tax relief. There are several cities, counties, and states in which the IRS offers some residents the opportunity to receive full exemption from property tax payments, meaning that they are not required to pay these exorbitant taxes at all.
Here are just some of the criteria that could help you qualify for IRS tax help:
- Being a senior citizen
- Being a veteran or military service member
- Having specific disabilities
- Living on agricultural property
Appealing Your Tax Bill
If you’ve already tried the above techniques and have so far been unsuccessful in lowering your property tax, you could consider appealing your tax bill. This solution could also significantly reduce your property taxes.
To begin this process, you will need to enroll the help of an experienced tax attorney. This attorney will help you to gather all of the documentation you need in order to file an appeal. Some of the information you will need to provide includes notes on the condition of your home, photographs of the property, and perhaps a brand new assessment.
Once the local tax board receives your appeal, the process could take from a few weeks to a few months to be processed. While there is no guarantee that the appeal will be successful, you could potentially save a significant sum on your property taxes if it is.
In addition to saving you money, appealing your property taxes could also assist you in getting a more accurate assessment of your property’s value.
Begin Your Hunt For Discounts
While they may not be hiding in plain sight, you may be able to get your hands on some property tax discounts in your search for them hard enough. Some examples of discounts include lower property assessments for senior citizens, homestead exemptions, and veteran or military savings.
Some discounts could also cover the costs associated with managing your property taxes, for example, assessing your property’s value and filing a tax appeal. You may even be fortunate enough to stumble upon a property tax relief program during your search!
To begin your search, go online and look for local discounts offered in your home state. This is a quick and convenient way to gather information on different types of property tax relief services and IRS tax help available in your area!