Many people want to protest their real estate taxes, but don’t know where to begin. 

The first step is to Analyze your Real Estate Tax Bill.

  1. Find the fair market value.  St. Clair county tax bill has it at the top left or go to the county website to view the parcel and real estate tax inquiry search page                         Do you agree with the fair market value?  If you feel it is too high you will want to protest your taxes.
  2. Find the Exemptions.  If you live in your home, is your Owner Occupant exemption of $6,000 listed? if not you will want to contact the Assessor’s office to apply for that.  This will usually reduce your tax bill by several hundred dollars.  Are you 65 or older? If so you are qualified for the Senior homestead exemption and you should apply for that with the Assessor’s office.  Do you qualify for the Senior Freeze? Are you a returning Veteran?  Do you qualify for the Veteran disability exemption?  Visit your county website to learn about all available exemptions and applications.

Second Step:  You feel your fair market value and assessed value are too high and out of line in comparison with similar properties in you neighborhood, you are encouraged to inquire.  The first step is an informal discussion and review with a representative in the County Assessor’s office.  If your case is not resolved at this level, you may file an appeal to request a hearing with the Board of Review.  The 2020 form will be available on the county website after the 2019 tax bills go out.

Appeals:   Once you have formally filed an appeal with the Board of Review, you will be notified in writing of your scheduled appointment.  At that time you will be given the opportunity to appear before the Board to protest your assessment and present evidence.

Types of Evidence:  You are required to bring proper documentation/evidence to support your request for a reduction.  The follow items can be presented as evidence

  1. An exterior picture of your home or business and pictures of at least 3 similar properties, in your neighborhood, that are comparable to yours.
  2. A copy of your Property Record Card and your comparable properties PRC indicating that another assessment is lower than yours.  PRCs can be obtained from the Assessor’s office and online
  3. A copy of a recent appraisal report, sales contract, settlement statement or deed if available.

If you need assistance with gathering evidence, visit the Assessor’s office prior to you scheduled hearing date.

The Board of Review will hear your case, review your evidence, and rule on your appeal.  You will be notified in writing of the decision.

If you are not satisfied with the decision by the County Board of Review you can appeal to the State level with The Property Tax Appeal Board.

The Veliz-Vice Team of Century 21 Advantage – A Mother-Daughter Real Estate Team


About the author

Cindy Veliz & Raquel Vice

Cindy Veliz & Raquel Vice

The Veliz-Vice Team

Over 48 years of combined Real Estate experience and 2 Generations of knowledge. We have help hundreds of satisfied buyers and seller with their real estate needs. Let us help you!

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