More property taxes / contesting the value (originally posted 8/17/07)

By
Real Estate Agent with Sand Dollar Realty Group, Inc. BK627826

As expected, my Seminole County TRIM notices reflect very similar increased taxes. Many people do not realize that they have a right to contest their assessment. If the "just value" that the property appraiser is assessing to the property is higher than the value that you think it is worth you have the right to contest it. You will need to have some evidence to back you up. I contested one of my assessments last year and got the just value reduced by over $50,000.

The just value is not the appraised value or the value of similar comparables in the area. The Florida Statues has a lengthy definition of just value in FS 193.011 . It allows you to deduct closing costs, concessions, and commissions out of the appraised value. Thus a house that might comp out at $200,000 that might have a 6% commission, 3% of buyer closing costs, and 1.5% is seller closing costs might have a just value of $180,000 or less by deducting these costs. For income properties, value is typically determined by net operating income divided by the cap rate. With the rental market being somewhat soft, income properties may be over-assessed right now.

There are specific time frames to contest the just value. The dates are on your TRIM notices. If you need help with determining your values or in contesting your just values, our firm will be happy to assist you.

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Rob Arnold

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