Residential building in Central DC
In early March, DC homeowners generally receive notice of the assessed value of their property, a value based on sales data, field visits and existing land values, among other factors. In many cases, the assessment is deemed too high by the property owner, and he/she appeals the value with the city. This year, the deadline for an initial appeal is next Monday, April 2nd.
If you are moving forward with the appeal, the first step is gathering information to make your case. Check that details like square footage and number of bedrooms are noted correctly in the assessment. Collect sale price information on comparable homes in your neighborhood and check their assessed values in the Property Assessment Database. Some individuals that are appealing sometimes take photographs of nearby homes and the inside of their own home. If you are interested in contacting the assessor, their name is usually noted on the assessment document.
Once you have collected all the relevant information, you have three opportunities to appeal:
- For your first attempt, fill out and send in this form to the Office of Tax and Revenue, attaching all the data you have collected.
- If that fails, you have a second chance: a hearing with DC’s Board of Real Property Assessment and Appeals, an 18-member commission comprised of real estate professionals. For the hearing, you will need to bring all the documents you have collected.
- If both attempts fail, there is a third option: a hearing at DC’s Superior Court. This hearing will involve the assessor and two arbitrators. Again, bring the documents. After you and the assessor present your cases, the arbitrators will make a judgement.
According to the Office of Tax and Revenue, roughly one in five appeals results in a lowered assessment.
This article originally published at http://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/how_to_appeal_your_property_assessment/5334
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