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Appealing real estate property taxes advice.

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    Don't bother me! R7's Avatar
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    Appealing real estate property taxes advice.

    I know this may vary from town to town and state by state, just looking for a general idea how to handle this. I'm in Foster, RI if that helps.
    Short story, last year I put the property (148.8 acres) in a state approved farm/forest program, which reduces the taxable value to $115 per acre. The tax assessor has excluded 30 acres from my plan, which is adding $17,265 in taxable value. I've been to the town hall twice, and I'm getting resistance and excuses as to why. While there yesterday, I also found out that my base lot (4.6 acre house site excluded from the farm/forest plan) is being taxed at a value of $20,000 more than all my neighbors. She had no real answer to why the upcharge was there, other than saying it's my location??

    I'm confident with a call or 2 to the state agency in charge of the farm/forest plan, I can get that resolved. The base lot upcharge is the one I'd likely need some advice on. Assuming the town just flips me the bird, what's the next option, a real estate lawyer? Both combined, it's about $900 per year in taxes at the current rate.... which goes up every year.

    Has anyone fought such a thing before?

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    Re: Appealing real estate property taxes advice.

    don't know how it works in RI, is there a state board of tax appeals?

    when I purchased my house back in 1982, it was appraised at nearly double what I paid for it. First thing I did was file an appeal to the town, of course, the Selectmen denied my appeal, even with a list of comparable properties that were assessed in line with what I paid for my house.

    Next step was filing the appeal with the state board, armed with the list of about 10 comparable properties (copies of the tax assessment and as much info as I could get photos, maps, real estate sales listings etc., I won my appeal at the state, I got a rebate on that years taxes paid and a new assessment

    don't really remember much more, as it was 35 years ago

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    Re: Appealing real estate property taxes advice.

    I was told I'd be required to show comps.. which I was unable to do.

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    Re: Appealing real estate property taxes advice.

    Quote Originally Posted by nhbubba View Post
    I was told I'd be required to show comps.. which I was unable to do.
    NH has a weekly publication called the "Registry Review" that lists all deeds recorded the previous week, appraisers use it for comps, quick research online, I can't find a similar publication for RI

    The Registry Review – NH Data | The Warren Group

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    Re: Appealing real estate property taxes advice.

    I'm not sure the comps is what I'm looking for, the house/land together is valued much higher than I'm paying taxes for... before the farm/forest reduction. The town has a standard flat rate of $86,000 for the base lot, which is what everyone is paying. My base lot is valued at $106,000, and they haven't given me a reason why, other than saying it's my location. I went online and checked, all of my neighbors are close to $86,000 for the land.

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    Re: Appealing real estate property taxes advice.

    makes no sense that your "base lot" is valued higher, most of your land is back land and your house is not at the frontage where the highest value land normally is

    Did you pay more than comparable market value for your property, possibly screwing yourself when it comes to tax assessment?

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    Re: Appealing real estate property taxes advice.

    Property tax is never appealing...

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    Re: Appealing real estate property taxes advice.

    Quote Originally Posted by RandyO View Post
    makes no sense that your "base lot" is valued higher, most of your land is back land and your house is not at the frontage where the highest value land normally is

    Did you pay more than comparable market value for your property, possibly screwing yourself when it comes to tax assessment?
    There were no comps in the area at the time of sale, it appraised at exactly what we paid for it.

    My thoughts are, they don't like to lower taxes under any situation, so while I lowered the taxable value with the farm/forest program, they raised it back up some by adding it to my base lot.

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    Re: Appealing real estate property taxes advice.

    Just an update, the town has reluctantly added the extra acres to my forest plan and adjusted my value accordingly. As for the base lot upcharge, they had no answer or reasoning as to why it's there. They can't just remove it, so I have to file a tax appeal form explaining the reason for the appeal.
    It will likely take a while and my hopes are not high of that going smoothly

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    Re: Appealing real estate property taxes advice.

    Last week, I had to sit in front of the town tax board for a hearing on the upcharge to my base house lot. My initial appeal was denied, and I filed for a hearing. Last Tuesday I had the pleasure of explaining my case in front of 6 older ladies. I started by asking the question, why is there a 25% upcharge to my base house lot? Their answer, was simple, your location is so secluded and private. I smiled, said no, it’s really not that private, at the same time I was handing them a copy of the 99 year seeded hunting lease from the neighboring gun club. They had no argument after reading the lease, and I won my appeal. Between the farm forest error, and the 25% upcharge, I’ve reduced my annual town taxes a bit over $1,000 per year.

    I’ve had this place almost 2 years, and have never seen or heard a hunter from the gun club on my property, kinda funny when I think about how many issues that piece of paper has caused.

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    Re: Appealing real estate property taxes advice.

    "secluded and private"

    as opposed to "easy access" if you were close to a road

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    Re: Appealing real estate property taxes advice.

    It kills me that their justification for whacking you on taxes was that you were too secluded and private and therefore should pay more.

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    Last edited by e30addict; 02-13-18 at 05:13 PM.
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    Re: Appealing real estate property taxes advice.

    Quote Originally Posted by e30addict View Post
    It kills me that their justification for whacking you on taxes was that you were too secluded and private and therefore should pay more.
    How is that absolutely insane? Like fucking mental!

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  14. #14
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    Re: Appealing real estate property taxes advice.

    Quote Originally Posted by e30addict View Post
    It kills me that their justification for whacking you on taxes was that you were too secluded and private and therefore should pay more.

    The sad part is, the tax was added to the property in 2014, while the prior owner was suffering terminal illness and unable to fight back. The value is also set by a reavaluation company

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    Re: Appealing real estate property taxes advice.

    Is this the place that’s haunted? Damn, sounds like the perfect appeals board to grant a discount for that, never mind an up charge for remoteness!

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    Re: Appealing real estate property taxes advice.

    Definitely not private when you have ghosts watching you poop.

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    I went to MMI I know what Im doing here chief

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    Re: Appealing real estate property taxes advice.

    Quote Originally Posted by Imbeek View Post
    Is this the place that’s haunted? Damn, sounds like the perfect appeals board to grant a discount for that, never mind an up charge for remoteness!

    Yes, same place. If I had brought that house “activity” up to the tax board, they would have said, you’re not alone!

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