Acting Fast To Fight $82,000 In Extra Commercial Property Taxes

Posted by Anne Sheehan on Jul 16, 2015

Acting Fast To Fight $82,000 In Extra Commercial Property TaxesImagine receiving your commercial property tax assessment in the mail and seeing your building’s tax value has increased 400 percent from last year.

For property owners or executives in charge of managing corporate occupancy costs, such a significant tax value increase is something that will keep you up at night.

Don’t Lose Sleep Over Commercial Property Taxes!

As preposterous as it sounds, the story above is true. Such outsized tax value increases are a reality across the U.S. for all commercial property types. What’s more, if you don’t act swiftly to appeal your tax assessmentyou could miss the deadline and pay more than your fair share in commercial property taxes.

In the scenario outlined above, the property in an industrial park campus was slammed with an enormous proposed tax increase from about $17,000 to more than $99,000.

What would you do if you were notified that your tax bill was going to be $82,000 more than last year?  

Appeal Your Commercial Property Tax Assessment Before It’s Too Late

The best way to bring your commercial property tax value assessment back down to earth is to file an appeal with your local taxing authority.

Taxing authorities, especially those in smaller jurisdictions with limited resources, use a blanket, mass appraisal process for assigning tax value. These mass appraisals do not always take into account a building’s individual characteristics, specific or unique uses, and other factors that affect the property tax value.  

In our example above, the 260,000-square-foot building was constructed in the 1950s — there’s nothing to justify such a large tax value increase on an aging building in a nondescript industrial park. The property owners have a compelling argument that the building’s age and construction results in both functional and economic obsolescence that should in fact lower its tax value.

However, they had a narrow window of opportunity to file a commercial property tax appeal. If the owners did not act quickly they would have to pay the additional $82,000.

How To File An Appeal (And Why You Can’t Wait)

Filing a commercial property tax appeal must be done almost immediately upon receiving the assessment. Typically, you have just 30 days from receipt of your assessment to file the appeal. Filing your appeal by the deadline is the critical first step in lowering your commercial property tax obligation. However, the next objective is even more critical: winning your appeal.

As a rule of thumb, you should never wage a commercial property tax appeal unless you’re sure you can win. Without experience in spearheading a successful appeal from start to finish, it’s challenging to meet all the deadlines and produce substantial supporting evidence to make your case.

Here’s where a team of dedicated commercial property tax management specialists could help you save tremendous time and resources, while also fighting for you to keep money that’s rightfully yours.

Real Property Tax Advisors (RPTA) works across the U.S., providing commercial property tax management and consulting services for all property types, including industrial, manufacturing, retail, office, multifamily and more. Our clients have seen recent property tax value reductions worth more than $1.5 billion. That translates to $21 million (and counting!) in tax savings.

Now is a “high season” for commercial property tax appeals. Many deadlines are looming, so act quickly before your tax reduction opportunity slips away! For a limited time RPTA is offering a free appeal consultation to assess your options and help qualified taxpayers get started with a commercial property tax appeal.


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