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Qualified Appraisers Key to Property Tax Appeals, Appraisal Institute Says
press release, Appraisal Institute
   

Working with an Appraisal Institute Designated Member can benefit homeowners who choose to appeal their property tax assessments, the nation’s largest professional association of real estate appraisers said today.

“Homeowners should keep in mind that assessors are usually adept at spotting faulty valuations with values that appear to be unreasonably low,” said Appraisal Institute President Stephen S. Wagner, MAI, SRA, AI-GRS. “That is why it’s important to choose an appraiser who conforms to a strict code of ethics such as one governing the actions of Appraisal Institute Designated Members.”

Sometimes the assessor’s value is higher than market value, while in other cases the assessor’s value is lower than the market value, Wagner said.

He added that assessments can be based on incorrect information that can affect a homeowner’s property tax. However, tax assessors – who typically are elected officials -- seek to be fair to local residents during the assessment process, he noted.

However, Wagner advised, homeowners can consider a property tax appeal and should be prepared with all the necessary information.Many appraisers collaborate with property tax consultants and attorneys who specialize in tax appeal matters, which could provide the best opportunity for a property owner to increase the chances of a successful tax appeal. Qualified appraisers can help homeowners who choose to appeal their property tax assessments, he said.

Different municipalities can have different stages of tax appeals. Homeowners should check with their assessor’s office or a local appraiser who can provide expertise.

“Homeowners should consider having an independent appraisal prepared and then present the appraisal report to the assessor because appraisers – such as Designated Members of the Appraisal Institute – are independent, third party experts who provide credible, reliable opinions of value,” Wagner said.



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