Are Your Missoula or Western Montana Property Taxes Too High?
If you're like most of us, you recently received your notice from the Department of Revenue for the property taxes on your home or land in Western Montana. The Montana constitution and state law require periodic reappraisal of property and 2009 is a reappraisal year.
And if you're like me, your mouth dropped at the value that was assigned to your property - our appraised value was significantly higher than what our property is worth. If you're assessed value is high then the taxes assessed to your property may also be high.
So what can you do?
1.) Request an Informal Review: To do this, complete a Request for Informal Review Form (Form AB-26) and send it to your local Department of Revenue office within 30 days after you receive your assessment notice. This form allows you to attach information to it - such as a summary of similar properties and recent sales prices to show the market value. We provide a Free Comparative Market Analysis for residents in Western Montana upon request.
The completion of this form requires your property's Geocode and Legal Description, if you don't have that information, you can look it up online on the Montana Cadastral.
2.) You can also File an Appeal Directly to the County Tax Appeal Board. To do this, complete a Property Tax Appeal Form (which is much longer than the Request for Internal Review Form) and send it to the Clerk and Recorder in the County in which the property is located before the latest of these dates:
- 30 days after you receive your assessment notice
- 30 days after you receive the determination of your Informal Review Or
- By the first Monday in June
The forms are available by clicking on the above links, at your County Clerk & Recorder's Office or online at www.stab.mt.gov.
If you are appealing your property's market value or classification and your taxes become due before your appeal is resolved, you will need to:
- Specify the grounds of your protest in writing, and
- Pay the taxes disputed under protest by the due date.
If you are successful in your appeal, your County Treasurer will send you a refund.
Property Tax Assistance Programs
There are also several programs available for qualifying Montana property owners. Contact your County Treasurer for more information or visit the State's website at www.stab.mt.gov.
- Disabled Veterans or Spouses of Disabled Veterans
- Low Income
- Extended Property Tax Assistance
- Elderly Homeowner/Renter Income Tax Credit
Completing the forms just take a few minutes and could save you hundreds or possibly thousands of dollars on your property taxes.