Just a few days ago, I was listening to CNBC and an economic expert was discussing the areas in the country that are still impacted by soft housing markets. He mentioned Atlanta and he predicted the area would see another 4% drop in 2012.
Consequently, I was a bit surprised to receive my property assessment from DeKalb County and see that my assessment went up by more than six figures since last year. Clearly, this appraisal is out of step with the market.
Yesterday, DeKalb announced that mistakes were made and revised assessments are being prepared. The AJC has an article about it that you can read here.
It was not long ago that DeKalb County dramatically lowered assessed home values after being slow to adjust values consistent with the market downturn.
An inaccurate home value is costly either way. If it is too high, the homeowner pays too much in taxes. If it is too low, it could reduce the value of the property and make it harder to resell. That’s why it is so important to get it right.
If you believe your property value assessment is wrong and does not represent the market value, you should file an appeal. Details about filing an appeal can be found at these links:
• PropertyAppraisal (Click on “expand all” to see the answers to all of the questions)
You can also call the county at (404) 371-0841.
I would also recommend the following tips:
• Make sure you submit your appeal on time and the due date is on your notice.
• You must submit your appeal within 45 days of receiving your assessment. Your letter of appeal must be hand-delivered or POSTMARKED BY THE U.S. POSTAL SERVICE by the Appeal Deadline (the date is on the Notice) to ensure acceptance as a timely appeal.
• Late appeals will not be processed and DeKalb County does not accept appeals by email or fax.
• Keep a copy of your appeal, any supporting documents that you submit, and any correspondence with the county.
• With respect to supporting documents, you may wish to enclose information about your home’s value or comparable home values from an online site such as http://www.zillow.com/ or http://www.eppraisal.com/. In addition, you can look up your property as well as other properties at this link on DeKalb’s website: http://web.co.dekalb.ga.us/TaxCommissioner/search.asp.
• The more supporting data you can provide to support your claim about your home’s value, the better your chances on appeal. In addition, if the county does not grant your appeal, you will want to have supporting data for your appeal if it goes before the Board of Equalization, a hearing officer, an arbitration panel, or the Superior Court.