In most states of the United States, house owners receive an appraisal notice from tax assessors and appraisal districts. This notice includes the new value of their home based on the calculations of these authorities.
However, it’s shocking to see that some houses get an increase over 50% in just a year.
What’s even more shocking is that they get these increases even though they haven’t added anything new – yet alone major constructions. They also haven’t received any visits from any tax assessors.
So, how is this possible?
Calculating Home Value
Normally, these home values are estimates most especially when no tax assessor has come up to your property to collect data. They often use collected data from before and then use various methods to calculate your current home value.
Several factors go into assessing a home such as the following:
- Square footage
- Lot size
- Location of property
- Age of house
- Style of home
In a proper appraisal, a tax assessor should personally visit a home and collect information surrounding these factors. They may ask to go inside your home, but you can refuse if you wish. However, this doesn’t give them enough information and may work against you.
The bigger your property is, the higher the value. Aesthetically pleasing properties also tends to have a higher home value.
However, it is possible for your more straightforward home to be more valuable when it’s located in a nice neighborhood within reach of various services compared to a beautiful home in the middle of nowhere.
But how do tax assessors increase a home’s value by 50% or even more without seeing the house itself?
It is possible that they have collected data about your property – just not updated. From there, they will use the information they have to estimate your home’s value.
One of the ways they do this is by using the current market as a basis. They would then look at how much homes such as yours would cost nowadays. In addition, they would also look at construction costs if someone were to build a property similar to yours today.
Some tax assessors would also use your updated financial status as a basis. For example, you might be working a good job with great pay. They would then assume you have the money for updates.
Similar to seeking construction costs, they would then assume the type of update you would have done with your current financial status. If you have a better job now, it might be likely that your home can receive a steep increase in its value.
Protesting your Property
When a sudden increase seems suspicious, you should protest your property. The form is normally sent with the appraisal notice. You still have a few weeks to send it back so you can investigate and see whether your claims have a ring of truth.
Doing so can help you save some bucks with your property tax. The value of your home can say how much tax you’re paying for the year. That’s why you should always protest your property to help you.
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