In this day and age, property taxes seem to be ever rising. Competition between properties is rifer than ever before, and homeowners are paying more each time their property tax bill comes through. According to National Taxpayers Union up to 60% of houses are overvalued, which means property tax bills are often not accurate and can be appealed.
You can choose to appeal the bill by yourself, but due to the long and often complicated process, you can hire a realtor to do it for you and set up a convincing case. The case against paying extortionate property taxes can include a number of relevant factors.
These include properties similar to yours being charged lower property tax amount, the unappealing location of your home, and errors made by the assessor in the tax assessment. However, a cause for an appeal that is becoming increasingly popular is something called functional obsolescence.
What Is Functional Obsolescence?
Functional obsolescence occurs when a property has a significantly unattractive feature that may likely lessen its value. The feature is usually one that cannot be changed easily. The term actually has a very wide meaning. Although it usually occurs due to an outdated design feature, many other factors of the property can bring about functional obsolescence.
“Unattractive look and age of a house in a predominantly new and modernized neighborhood can lower its value, as well as fewer bedrooms or bathrooms in comparison with other nearby houses,”—shares Jeff Adams, a seasoned property investor from PropertyCashin.com—“What’s more, the landscaping of a property can make it functionally obsolete, too. Poor landscaping occurs when the front or back garden of a house is dated, impractical or physically unappealing. And you can use all that to your advantage.”
Having a Nice-Looking Property Is Expensive
There are many features buyers consider when purchasing a house. Some of them are more important than others, and therefore add more value to a property. Learn about these priorities and use them in reverse. It doesn’t mean you should necessarily damage your house on purpose, but if your garden looks not that attractive, maybe it doesn’t make much sense to invest your time and money in improving it after all?
Poor landscaping on your property and the resulting functional obsolescence can have a huge impact on the amount of tax you pay as a homeowner. When taking into consideration the negative features of your house and comparing these with other homes in the surrounding area, tax assessors have every responsibility to lower the amount of property tax you are charged.
What to Do to Lower Your Property Tax
Well, there are many viable ways you can make sure the tax assessor cuts your property tax due to poor landscaping. Firstly, you need to access your property tax cards. You can do this by going down to your local town hall and requesting to view or receive a copy of this document.
The type of information that should be included here is the size of the lot, dimensions of each room, types of fixtures inside the home, and any home improvements that have been made on the dwelling over time. There will also be the figure of the tax you have been charged.
Quite often homeowners notice small errors in their documentation. This is a relevant cause to appeal the property tax figure, and many people have done this with great success.
According to the article “3 Ways to Lower Your Property Taxes” published on the national online platform for property tax experts – Direct Tax loan, bringing up the fact that other homes in your neighborhood are more modernized than yours will help you convince your tax authorities to lower your rate. If many other homes have more bedrooms and/or bathrooms, more modern fixtures, and more practical landscaping, these are all completely viable reasons to state why you should pay less tax.
The next thing you should do if you are not confident about appealing the tax on your own is to go to a specialized firm to help you through the process.
There are a rising number of firms on the market since property tax is becoming such a huge issue for homeowners. There are traditional realtor firms, as well as companies specializing specifically in this niche. They have vast databases that include properties in your area to quickly access to all necessary information.
Whichever type of firm you opt for, it will be comforting to know that you have professionals on hand to help you set up a convincing case on why you’re entitled to pay less tax on your home.
So, if you’re certain that the landscaping on your property is a cause to go against the tax assessor, then you’re more than likely right. The front and back gardens of a house are two of the most important aspects.
The first thing you need to do is to go to your local town hall and get your documentation in order. Look for minor errors, and compare with the rest of the neighborhood with size and landscaping in mind. Then it’s time to consult with a professional realtor, who can help you pay the tax you are supposed to.