Reduce Real Property Taxes

The ongoing credit crunch in New York, leading to a decline in market values of commercial and residential real property continues to provide money saving opportunities for property owners in New York to obtain reductions in the tax valuation of their real estate.  This leads to a decrease their real property taxes.  If you own real estate in New York, appeal the tax valuation of your real property when the market values in your neighborhood have declined.

In New York, real property gets appraised every so often.  If you believe the value that an auditor has established for your real estate is too high, you have the right to appeal the valuation of the real estate. You can ask an experienced New York attorney to help you prepare and file the complaint.

To find out whether to file a complaint on the value of your real estate, engage an appraiser or find out the worth of the properties in your area through newspapers or other public documents from homes or real property sold in the area.  An appraiser needs experience in appraising the type of property you own in the neighborhood in which the property is situated.  The appraiser should have experience in testifying in case s/he is called as a witness.  If the appraiser believes the actual property value or your real estate is not materially different from the value at which the auditor may assess the real estate, filing a tax valuation complaint may not be worth the time or expense, especially after calculating in the tax attorneys’ fees and appraisal fees associated prosecuting the complaint

In a valuation complaint, you may be given a hearing to present your appraisal report, and the testimony of the appraiser.  Be aware that sometimes property tax increases may be for school, village growth, or other types of public facility funding so the increase in taxes may not necessarily relate to the value of the real property.  A person may have an easier time arguing for a decrease if the person just purchased the real property.  If the price paid for the property several years was high, the high property tax may be considered fair because the high price paid for the property is presumed the fair market value of the property.

When real property taxes become due while a complaint is filed, you should speak with an attorney on how you should pay the taxes.  You do not want to end up having to pay late charges for not paying taxes on time.

This June 2011, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo passed a property tax cap. The law requires the local governments and school districts to raise taxes no more than 2 percent or the rate of inflation, whichever is less. The tax cap makes those owning property for a long time pay less real property taxes than though who just buy their real estate.  Though, New York communities may have flexibility to raise or lower property taxes according to their needs. If taxpayers in a community want to pay more taxes, they can override the cap with a 60 percent vote for schools and by a 60 percent vote of the governing body for local governments.

Contact an experienced New York tax attorney to help you with individual tax problems.