Property taxes can be reduced through a rebate.
A property tax reduction is a reduction in the amount of money owed to a government tax authority on a property tax account. In most jurisdictions, there are several programs that reduce property taxes if a person or property is eligible. Typically, the rebate is requested by homeowners who consider the tax amount to be too high, given the current value of the property or the owner’s ability to pay. The reduction process pursuant to an appeal by an owner of a assessment is in the nature of an administrative hearing that grants the requested relief or maintains the assessment.
In some US states, seniors can receive a full or partial rebate on their property taxes.
Countries that allow the levying of taxes on the private property of immovable property normally grant the right to the local jurisdictions where the property is located. These local governments use property taxes to raise money for public projects and services, such as supporting the police and fire departments, the public school system, or to build new roads. The value of the tax collection is a percentage of the market value of the land and its improvements. An official government appraiser makes this value determination.
The determination of the value is based on the market value of the property. This amount is obtained using recent sales of comparable properties. A downturn in the housing market can dramatically decrease the value of a property, but the tax assessment never goes down on its own to take into account properties that are selling below market. In difficult economic times, homeowners often proactively request a property tax reduction to bring their property tax collection in line with what the property is actually worth.
Property tax relief is an option in most jurisdictions, but it is often difficult to obtain. The request is heard and decided administratively without the benefit of input from ordinary people who may know from ordinary experience how property values in the area have declined. Local governments often allow homeowners only one chance to file a reduction case within a certain number of years, so succeeding on the first try is particularly important. Many homeowners hire independent tax reduction experts to manage the process and make the case to ensure the greatest likelihood of success.
A local government can also make tax breaks on its own initiative. Sometimes a jurisdiction will design a public program that uses the property tax reduction as a carrot to encourage a certain behavior or to help a certain class of people. For example, a local government’s economic development arm may offer rebates to companies that install facilities in a particularly difficult area. A local government may also create a program to keep the elderly in their homes and may offer a rebate to individuals over a certain age.