All properties are subject to taxation by local governments. Property taxes can be a significant burden for commercial property owners.
An assessment is usually conducted to determine the amount of money that a commercial property owner will owe in property taxes each year. It is possible to dispute the results of this assessment by filing an appeal.
To file an appeal, you will need to work closely with your attorney to complete three important tasks as you prepare a commercial tax appeal in the future.
1. Research Comparable Properties
Your research will play a central role in the filing of your commercial property tax appeal. An experienced attorney will be able to gather documentation showing the property tax amounts for commercial properties that are similar to your own. If the tax amount associated with these comparable properties is significantly lower than the amount stated in your tax assessment, this could indicate that your assessment may not be accurate. You will have a greater chance of getting your property taxes lowered if you can prove that comparable properties have a lower tax burden.
2. Document Your Property
The condition of a commercial property can influence the amount of money the property owner will pay in taxes each year. A tax assessment is supposed to provide an accurate picture of what your property is like, but these assessments can fall short in their descriptions of real property. You can document the condition of your property by taking photographs, submitting plans for any future improvements, and outlining any maintenance required to keep the property looking its best. This documentation can be shown to the appeal committee as evidence that your property taxes should be lowered.
3. Establish Market Value
Property taxes are based, in part, on the overall value of a commercial property. A tax assessment might not factor in the current market value of your property. Your property tax appeal should include information on the sale of comparable properties to help establish an accurate value for your property within the current market. An attorney will be able to help you gain access to sales information for properties that are roughly the same size and condition as your own property. These sales reports should be enough to validate your market value estimate when you are appealing your commercial property tax amount in the future.
You don't have to accept the amount generated by a property tax assessment. Work with a real estate tax attorney to appeal any tax assessment that you feel is too high.