John Simpson, MAI has authored 4 books with the Appraisal Institute and 12 Appraisal Journal articles, but that’s just a part of his monologue. He helps run an appraisal firm, and has been an active day-to-day commercial appraisal for almost 2 decades.
John Simpson, MAI has done an excellent job of identifying many of the key rules of successfully appealing property in his recent 12-part series - Simpson's Keys to Successful Tax Appeals - on his Appraisal Matters blog.
As a commercial appraiser for a township assessment office in Illinois, I can attest to the validity of his remarks! Although his series of articles focus on commercial property appeals . . .the same rules will apply to residential income properties and even single-family homes.
Here's a brief summary of his series:
Keys to Successful Tax Appeals - Part 1 - With the current well-publicized real estate problems, tax appeals have become more viable for commercial property owners. The bottom line is a lower property value, yet real estate tax assessments have not been reduced accordingly.
Keys to Successful Tax Appeals - Part 2 - Key 1 – Know the Rules Before You Play -
Although this may seem cliché, not knowing the jurisdiction’s tax assessment and appeals rules can derail a tax appeal well before it even has a chance to be heard.
Keys to Successful Tax Appeals - Part 3 - Key 2 - Avoid “Protective” Appeals - In the last few years, it has become more common for clients to file protective tax appeals on all owned properties. This is a practice that can severely backfire
Keys to Successful Tax Appeals - Part 4 - Key 3 – Know Your Market and Submarkets - Although you may not be an expert, you can call upon experts to learn about your market. Brokers have their fingers on the pulse of the market and they are often more than happy to provide you with truly comparable properties for comparison . .
Keys to Successful Tax Appeals - Part 5 - Key 4 – Always get the Assessor’s worksheet - The Assessor’s worksheet is a document that shows how the Assessor arrived at the market value a property. Many times, the addresses of the comparable sales are included and sometimes operating expense comparables and capitalization rate comparables are shown.