Whether you have a commercial property or a residential property in Georgia, there is a chance that you are paying too much in property taxes. In fact, there are estimates that about 60% of homes are overvalued and overtaxed. Commercial properties can be the victim of overvaluation, as well. This means that you could be paying a lot more in your property taxes than you should be.
If you are worried that you might be paying too much, take a close look at your bill from the GA tax assessors, and do so sooner rather than later. If you find that there is a problem, or you believe there is a problem, you will only have a limited amount of time to file for an appeal.
What Should You Do?
As soon as you receive your tax bill from the county, you will want to examine it and compare it to previous years’ taxes. If this is the first year that you owned the property and are paying taxes on it, you will not have much to compare it to of your own. However, you can look at the previous values of the property, including what you paid for it. This should help to give you a better idea of what the property taxes should be. Of course, there are always plenty of other factors that could be at play, as well.
If you have even an inkling that you are paying too much in property taxes, though, and that the GA tax assessors might have made an error, you want to err on the side of caution. This means you will want to file for an appeal. Then, you will be given a date for your hearing. Before the hearing, you will need to gather evidence that will support your belief that the property is being overtaxed.
What Do You Need to Know?
One of the most important things that you will need to keep in mind will be the deadlines that you have to meet. You will first need to mail the appeal paperwork to the GA tax assessors by the date provided in your property tax bill. Once you file for the appeal, you will be provided with a date for your hearing, as well. If you miss that hearing, you will not be able to get your appeal. Make sure you keep those dates firmly in mind.
What Types of Evidence Are Acceptable?
You will need to make sure that you are gathering the information that will help to support your case. You will want to be sure that your property is being fairly taxed, and that means you will need to show evidence that you are being overcharged. The type of evidence that you will need can vary based on the property.
You will want to look at the information that was used by the GA tax assessors regarding your property. You will need to look at the information that they used and compare it to your own residential property. Do they have the square footage right? Did they use the right number of rooms? Do they believe that you have a garage or a pool when you don’t? If there is incorrect information, it will mean that their assessment will be incorrect.
In other cases, there might be a simple matter of mistaken math. Numbers could have been transcribed incorrectly and not caught. Again, this would mean that you are paying too much on your property taxes.
If the assessors used comp values to come up with your property tax, there is a chance that they could be incorrect, as well. The comps need to be comparable properties that are in the area. You might find that those other properties have had upgrades recently that your property has not, such as an added garage or pool. Their value would be higher, and it would not be a truly comparable property. When you are looking for your own comps to refute this, keep in mind that the comps need to be taken from the same timeframe that the assessors were doing their research. This is because the market could have changed between then and now.
What Does the Evidence Say?
Once you have gathered evidence and looked at the paperwork from the GA tax assessor’s office, what is your conclusion? Does it appear that you have been overcharged on your taxes, or was the assessor correct? The market itself might have changed, which could have accounted for their assessment being different from what you thought it should be, for example. There is a chance that the evidence is correct regarding your property taxes.
However, that’s not always the case, and that’s the goal of finding this evidence. You want to provide the county with an overwhelming amount of evidence in your favor if you can. This will help to ensure that your taxes are correct.
Too Much to Handle
Do you find that there is too much to do all on your own? Remembering the filing and hearing dates might be easy enough. However, doing all of the legwork and trying to take care of gathering all of that evidence takes time and expertise. Those are things that you might not have. Therefore, instead of trying to take care of it all on your own, your best option is to work with a professional who does it for a living.
Take the time to get in touch with our company. You can fill out a form on our site, or you can call (404) 618-0355. With more than 20 years in the field of property valuation for all types of properties, both commercial and residential, we have the experience to help you. We have been very successful with our past clients and would like to be able to help you, as well. You shouldn’t have to pay more in taxes than what you truly owe.