Lessening the tax liability on your Temecula rental property is definitely worth the effort if you have the opportunity. Regardless if you are new to investing in rental property or a seasoned professional, reviewing your Temecula property value assessment to determine whether it’s accurate is time well spent.
At Realevate Specialists, we recommend all of our landlords to take the time to do this because they might discover that the assessment is too high, which once re-evaluated can lead to reduced property taxes. There are several ways to verify whether your current property assessment is correct.
How a Property Should be Assessed
Properties are usually assessed by a town or city’s assessor annually. In many cases, the assessor reviews the current status of your property and any improvements done and the current market conditions for similar homes in your location, then they multiply that by the area’s level of assessment as decided by the municipality. If you have a multi-family building, the assessor will factor in the income earned from the property over the past year minus maintenance costs into the valuation. The cost of replacing the home is also considered in determining its assessment.
If you open your annual property tax bill and nearly collapse from shock at the figures, take a few deep breaths and then carefully contemplate the options you have to lower the tax bill. One thing to remember, however, is that you have a deadline to dispute the assessment. Most municipalities will offer you 30 to 60 days after you receiving the assessment to challenge it.
How to Understand an Assessment
Look at what the assessment states about your property. You may discover that you’ve suddenly become the owner of Temecula property that is nothing like the one you really own. For example, the assessment might mistakenly give your house four bedrooms when it only has three or place your address in an upscale neighborhood nearby your actual location. In one case, a homeowner’s one-story home with vaulted ceilings was incorrectly listed as a two-story house and charged double the actual square footage because the assessor observed it from outside rather than doing a more detailed inspection.
The value of similar properties in your neighborhood can inform you about your own property’s assessment. If you are friends with your neighbors, you might be able to learn from their assessment. Otherwise, it’s a practical idea to compare your property with four or five in your general location that have the same amount of square footage and the same property size.
Look into Exemptions
While you’re taking the time to ensure the valuation of the property is right, also look into whether you’re receiving any exemptions to which you qualify. Various states and many municipalities offer breaks to owners who are senior citizens or veterans, homes located in certain areas, and a number of other exemptions. Your local tax assessor may be able to help you find any tax breaks to which you’re entitled.
If the first tax bill after purchasing your property shows that its tax assessment value increased by nearly 50 percent in one year, as what happened to an owner in Georgia, you’ll want to request for a review to help you understand any changes. Many tax assessors are willing to informally explain your assessment. If you’re not content with the informal explanation, you can make a formal appeal. Property owners who have followed this route say they’ve been able to lower their assessments significantly.
When you work with Realevate Specialists, we help you get the most out of your property and lead it to success. For more information, contact us online or call our Mission Valley office at 858-997-2100 or our Temecula office at 951-461-0100.
We are pledged to the letter and spirit of U.S. policy for the achievement of equal housing opportunity throughout the Nation. See Equal Housing Opportunity Statement for more information.