If you believe your home’s assessed value is greater than what you can sell your house for, then it is in your best interest to contest the value. The first thing you have to understand is that property taxes are one of the largest sources of revenue for your municipality, county, and state government. Tax assessments are made up of two components, they include the value of your land and also your dwelling. The Ohio revised code and Ohio administrative code mandate the appraisal department to conduct a re-appraisal of each parcel every six years, or an update every three years if improvements were made to the dwelling based upon building permits pulled on your property. Understanding how to contest your home’s assessed value is critical to winning your appeal. You will need to consider many factors to determine the fair value of your home. The auditor will look at acreage, age of your home, square footage, recent improvements, outbuildings, decks or patios, and/or other areas of your property that have value.
To appeal your property tax assessment, you should contact your local county auditor to file a formal appeal of the assessed value of your property. You should start by requesting a copy of the property card from your local auditor’s office. The property card should include the information used to determine your home’s assessed value, which includes: square footage, lot size, bedrooms, bathrooms, finished basement, etc. If there are any inaccuracies in this information, you should inform your auditor’s office in writing of the errors. You should also contact your local auditor’s office to fill out an appeal form or you can electronically file an appeal on their website. E-filing provides homeowners easy access to complete and submit a department of taxation form, which is a complaint against the valuation of real property online eliminating the requirement for a signature and a notary seal.
Many of the county auditors in Ohio will only accept property valuation appeals during the first three months of the year. If you have recently purchased your home, you should provide the auditor a copy of your purchase agreement and a copy of your HUD statement or closing disclosure as evidence of the value of your property. If you have owned your home for more than a year, it would be in your best interest to contact a licensed appraiser to have your home appraised and valued.
In addition to the appraisal, it would be beneficial to provide a list of recently sold homes in your area that are similar in age, square footage, amenities, and lot size to your own home. You should provide as much information and documentation as possible when you appeal your property taxes. When referring to your property, use your parcel number and address. This can be obtained from your tax bill. The more information you provide to the auditor, the greater the chances that your assessed value will be lowered, but be careful because the board of revisions may use the information you provide to increase or decrease the total value of any parcel included in a complaint.