Most homeowners routinely think of appealing the tax assessment on their homes. Owners of commercial properties should also examine their assessments, because an appeal may yield significant tax savings.
The tax assessment is also a very important factor to consider when purchasing or selling a property. A lower assessment can increase the attractiveness of a property, and reviewing your assessment should be part of your due diligence when preparing a property for sale.
Cities and townships are reluctant to drop tax assessments to match the steep decline in property values, so it is important to understand the appeal process. Commercial and industrial property owners may file an appeal directly with the Michigan Tax Tribunal for real property, such as the land and buildings on the land, as well as personal property, including any equipment located at the property.
Residential property owners must first protest the tax assessment to the local board of review. There are filing deadlines, so contact your attorney for details.
The Michigan Tax Tribunal has a large backlog of cases. The waiting time for a result could be two to four years if the local assessor is not willing to settle the matter.
You must continue to pay all taxes due while the appeal is pending, but if you win the appeal you will be entitled to a refund with interest.
If you’d like to discuss your property tax assessment or options for appealing an assessment, call Jay LaBarge, partner at Bellanca, Beattie & DeLisle, P.C. (313) 454-4218.