How do I File a Property Tax Appeal?

Nicole Madison
Nicole Madison

The process you have to follow to file a property tax appeal depends on the laws of the jurisdiction in which the property is located. In most cases, however, you may start by having an independent appraisal done to determine if the tax assessment was indeed too high. Then, you may ask an appraiser to compile a report for use in your case. When you are ready to file, you will usually have to submit an appeal form, an appraisal report, and any other supporting documents to the tax appeal board or a similar government office in your jurisdiction.

Individuals may file a property tax appeal by challenging the assessment of their real estate.
Individuals may file a property tax appeal by challenging the assessment of their real estate.

Before you file a property tax appeal, you may perform some preliminary steps to figure out whether or not your assessment was on target. For example, if you think the tax value is significantly higher than it should be, you may contact or visit the local assessor and request tax records for your property. You may then seek the help of a residential appraiser in determining whether or not the assigned value is accurate or seems significantly off target. With the help of an appraiser, you can determine what you believe the value should be and make the decision to file a property tax appeal.

You may help an independent appraiser by being forthcoming with information about your property and the surrounding area. This may help him make his report as accurate as possible. For example, informing him of neighborhood issues or problems with the property may help him in his analysis. Even information about construction going on nearby may prove helpful. Additionally, a real estate broker may have vital information to share about your property or neighborhood; he may even provide information about the homes that are most comparable to your property.

When you’re ready to file a property tax appeal, you may usually do so with your local government. The process for accomplishing this may vary from place to place, but you will usually have to obtain a tax appeal form and submit it along with your supporting documents, such as your appraisal report and any other evidence you have collected. Most jurisdictions have deadlines for filing appeals, and you may do well to double-check your local deadline to be sure you will not miss it. After the required documents are filed, you will usually receive a hearing date on which a review board will consider your property tax appeal case.

Nicole Madison
Nicole Madison

Nicole’s thirst for knowledge inspired her to become a wiseGEEK writer, and she focuses primarily on topics such as homeschooling, parenting, health, science, and business. When not writing or spending time with her four children, Nicole enjoys reading, camping, and going to the beach.

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Discussion Comments


Most real estate agents in our area are still calling this a soft market. It does seem to be improving, but I have been told that if you do not need to sell your home, it will be best for you to hold on to it for a few years until the market turns around.

When a review board looks at your home value they not only look at your property tax records, but also the current appraised value of your home and base your assessment on that. There are several factors that are taken into consideration, but it is all public information that can be accessed, so it is always helpful to do some research and have a good idea of what the market is doing in your area.


It is a good idea to keep a close eye on your property tax assessment records. I know they take into consideration the number of homes that are similar in value to yours in your neighborhood. If there have not been very many home sales that are close to the dollar amount of your assessed value, they don't have much information to go on.

This happened to us, and they still increased our property taxes. Because the market has been slow, there have not been very many home sales in our neighborhood. We still received an increased in our property taxes, so for the first time ever decided to pursue appealing our property taxes. I am still waiting to hear the date the board will review our information and hope it turns out well.


Our property taxes are due every 6 months - in March and September. Every April we receive a letter from our county treasurer telling us the assessed value of our property and how it compares to the value from the year before.

Included with this information is a form that you can fill out to appeal your property taxes. This assessed value is what they base your property taxes on. If the value of your home has declined, then you would think that your property taxes would also go down, but that is not usually the case! Many times your taxes keep going up. This is when you would want to consider filing an appeal.

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