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Understanding Your Property Tax Assessment
Dated: May 26 2020
My property tax assessment is high, low or inaccurate. What can I do?
For many people, it’s difficult to determine how the assessed value of a property is calculated. Is it correct? What if it’s too high or too low? How do I address it with the Tax Assessor? Most of these answers can be found on the Georgia Department of Revenue’s website, and we’ve summarized the information below.
How do I figure the tax on my home?
The basic formula to figure the tax on a home using the State's standard $2,000 homestead exemption is: [(assessed value) - $2,000] * millage rate = tax due Example: Fair market value means "the amount a knowledgeable buyer would pay for the property and a willing seller would accept for the property at an arm's length, bona fide sale." Assessed value is 40% of the fair market value. If a person that owned a home with a fair market value of $100,000 in an unincorporated area of a county where the millage rate was 25.00 mills, that person's property tax would be $950.00--[(100,000 * 40%) - $2,000] * .02500 = $950.00. Multiply $100,000 by 40% which is equal to the assessed value of $40,000 and subtract the homestead exemption of $2,000 from the assessed value. Then multiply $38,000 by the millage rate of .02500 which is equal to $950.00.
How do I appeal my property tax assessment?
The county board of tax assessors must send an annual assessment notice which gives the taxpayer information on filing an appeal on real property (such as land and buildings affixed to the land). If the county board of tax assessors disagrees with the taxpayer’s return on personal property (such as airplanes, boats or business equipment and inventory), the board must send an assessment notice which gives the taxpayer information on filing an appeal.
Upon receipt of this Assessment Notice, the property owner desiring to appeal the assessment may do so within 45 days of the date the Assessment Notice was mailed. The taxpayer’s appeal may be based on taxability, value, uniformity, and/or the denial of an exemption. The written appeal is filed initially with the Board of Tax Assessors. The state of Georgia provides a uniform appeal form for use by property owners. In that initial written dispute, the property owner must declare their chosen method of appeal.
The taxpayer must select one of the three options below when filing an appeal:
1. Appeal to the County Board of Equalization
2. Appeal to a Hearing Officer
3. Appeal to an Arbitrator
If the county board of tax assessors has adopted a written policy consenting to electronic service, the taxpayer may email an appeal to the board of assessors.
The Department of Revenue may not over-ride the board of assessors, board of equalization, hearing officer, arbitrator or Superior Court regarding individual appraisals and assessments. The Local Government Services Division of the Georgia Department of Revenue is charged with general supervision of ad valorem tax administration across the state including; annual approval of tax digests; the training and certification of tax officials; and regularly scheduled audits of each of the 159 county boards of assessors.
How can I determine the fair market value of my home?
For those that love numbers and scanning through hours of data, you’ll simply find the most comparable home sales in your immediate area and determine the value based on that. For most, contacting a local Realtor will be your easiest option. Local Realtors have the local market knowledge to provide this information quickly and efficiently and most are willing to do it for FREE!
We hope you find this information helpful. If you have any questions we can answer in more detail, please contact us through our website at www.northpauldingliving.com and one of our local expert Realtors will respond quickly!
Prior to his real estate career, Geoff spent nearly 25 years in the retail Grocery industry, most recently as a Store Manager with Publix Supermarkets, Inc. His ability to manage diverse people, syste....
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