The Dust Begins to Settle from Lancaster County’s Countywide Property Tax Reassessment
We have written a lot of articles about the countywide property tax reassessment covering the basics of residential and commercial assessment appeals and what the new assessed values will mean to property owners. Now that most of the appeals have been processed, the county and each school district and municipality knows the total assessed value of property. They will all set their tax millage rates before the end of the year. All of this coming together will allow you to calculate your total property tax for 2018.
I had the opportunity to work with a few commercial property owners who decided to appeal their assessments. In these cases, we were able to get the total assessed value of the properties cut almost in half. This is going to save these particular landowners around $20,000 per year in property taxes. Every case is different, and I cannot guarantee that anyone would be successful in a property tax appeal. There were, however, major similarities in the properties that received big adjustments in their assessed value. These were:
- There was something unusual about the property that the county did not take into consideration; and
- The property owners had a good appraisal report to support their appeal.
With both of these things present, a commercial property owner has a good chance at getting their assessment reduced.
So what happens if you decided not to pursue a property tax appeal this summer? You are able to appeal your assessment every year. There is a short window of time between when taxes are sent out and the tax appeal deadline of August 1. This does not mean you have to wait until next summer to think about a tax assessment appeal. If you believe that the assessment of your property is incorrect, we can help to evaluate and pursue an appeal.
Aaron Marines is an attorney at Russell, Krafft & Gruber, LLP, in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. He received his law degree from Widener University and practices in a variety of areas including Commercial and Residential Real Estate, Land Use, Land Planning and Zoning matters.