Thursday, January 20, 2011

Reduce Your San Luis Obispo Property Tax Bill!

Reduce Your San Luis Obispo Property Tax Bill!

Do you own a home in San Luis Obispo that has declined in property value? In California we live in a high property tax area and you can save a bundle by fighting your assessment. The County has been reassessing properties all over, but they haven't yet gotten to everyone. You can do something today to get your home reevaluated. Doing it yourself can seem like a daunting task, but there are easy steps to reduce your bill to a much more realistic value of your home, lot or condo.

I love examples so here's one to give you a clear scenario:
Let's say you live in San Luis Obispo and the value of your home has reduced from $600,000 to $450,000. A huge drop! A reassessment of your bill could lower your annual bill from approximately $7,500 to $5,625, an annual savings of $1,875. That's two round trip tickets to Italy!

So now what?
SLO County has a website that walks you through the process. The "Decline in Property Value" Application is available to download and fill out. There is even a Decline in Value Estimator that can tell you if you are eligible for a reduction. You will need your 9-digit Assessment Parcel Number (APN) to do it. The Parcel number is on your annual property tax bill. You will also need to put in a fair market value of your home based on homes that have sold in your area recently. A Realtor can get you this number, email me if you need a more accurate number. Then it spits out your revised Assessed Value. Then fill out the "Decline in Property Value"form and get the county moving on your reassessment. Do wait till they do it, it could take years.

If you aren't up for the task you can outsource the work to a local real estate lawyer or a property tax appeal expert. They will handle everything and charge 25%-50% of your first years tax savings. I recommend doing it your self, SLO County makes it simple to do.

I hope this is helpful and if you live in another California County or another State you can do this too. Many forms and resources online can assist you in being proactive with reassessments. I encourage you to do this as part of your new year resolution. Take the extra money and go an amazing vacation and send me a postcard.:)

Are you in the market to buy or to sell your home? Give me a call today!

"A Realtor that knows homes."

Traci Ferguson

License #01875751, ecoBroker #16082

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