If you are planning on protesting your property taxes in effort to match your post-recession property value, it needs to be done as soon as possible. In many counties property tax assessments have failed to adjust to the changing home values, meaning it is up to you to dispute the values and get a reevaluation

“Taxpayer Return of Real Property” requires a PT-50R form and the deadline for Dekalb, Gwinnett, Hall and Newton counties is  March 1. Most other Georgia counties are allowing until April 1 to file for a change in property valuation for tax purposes.

Reasons you should protest your property tax value include:

  1. Home values in Atlanta hit bottom last fall and homes that sold and closed before 2010 are of comparable depressed value. Prices are starting to recover and if you don’t protest now, efforts will be undermined.
  2. Governments are starting to feel the pinch of increased demand and are in position to raise ad velorum on real estate.  Also, if your property is overvalued, you are subsidizing your neighbors.
  3. If successful in protest, common Georgia practice is that it remains in effect for 3 years.

There is no cost to file this one page protest and the results could be beneficial for a couple of years.  Protest now–before you lose the opportunity to do so–and you can worry about collecting the data when you hear back from the assessor’s office. One-in-three people receive a decrease in their property tax value and if it does happen that the the county denies your claim, the next step is to appeal to the Board of Equalization.

For more information and updates, read the entire column.

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