Review Your Property Tax Assessments…Now

Most Michigan residents have recently received their property tax assessment notices for 2010, which should reflect the significant decrease in property values of their real estate.

Property owners should carefully review the assessments they received, as the change in valuation will directly impact the amount of their current and future property taxes. While the decreases are very discouraging, if you are not planning to sell your property in the near future, a careful review may be beneficial for years to come.

Under Michigan law, when property values rise, the increase is capped at 5% or less, per year. This is called the taxable value. Taxpayers should review their assessments, as this year may be the low point in valuations and future increases would thus be based on this figure.

Time is of the essence, as to appeal your assessment, you must go before your local community’s Board of Review, which is generally in March. To go before the Board of Review, you should be prepared with recent comparable property sales, and possibly even consider retaining a qualified real estate appraisal, if the amount of the disputed tax is large enough.

The process for commercial real estate may be different and may result in appearing before the Michigan Tax Tribunal, which sometimes reviews these cases for multiple years at one time, due to the heavy caseloads.

While our firm does not specialize in this area, we can review your situation with you and provide you additional guidance, and referrals to specialists, if it is considered necessary.

We highly recommend that you review your assessment promptly, as this may save you money. Immediate action is necessary to receive any benefit.

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