Top Tax Grievance Myths & The Truth

It’s not uncommon for myths about tax grievances to spread. It’s not an area everybody understands, and it can be confusing. Here’s a look at a few of the top myths about tax grievances and the truth for each.

The County will Raise My Taxes if I File a Grievance

Some believe they will suffer the consequences of filing a grievance; mainly, watching the county raise their taxes. This isn’t true. Instead, homeowners in New York are protected from municipalities raising their tax assessment after filing a grievance. You have the right to challenge your assessment in NY, and they may reduce it, but they can’t raise it.

I don’t need to File a Tax Grievance because I am Selling my Home

You may think it’s better to just let the new buyers deal with the tax grievance. However, this isn’t a good idea, and can end up costing you quite a bit of money. In most cases, the buyers will pay the grievance company because they will benefit from it, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t file a grievance. In fact, the Long Island Board of Realtors did a study and found that for every $1,000 less your property taxes are; the home’s value may be raised by $10K when it’s sold.

It’s not Safe for Me to File a Grievance Because I have additions the County Doesn’t know About

Maybe you don’t want to file a grievance because you’re afraid the county will find out about an addition or finished basement and you’ll pay more in taxes. The county doesn’t have enough resources to investigate every grievance filed every single year. While you shouldn’t have illegal additions, there’s no guarantee the county will investigate it in person if you file a grievance. In addition, you may gain benefits from making it legal if the reduction in taxes is higher than the increase from the addition.

I don’t need to File a Grievance because I get an Exemption

Many people think they are already paying the lowest amount for property taxes because they get a Veterans, STAR or Enhanced STAR exemption. This may not be the case. While these programs offer advantages, filing a tax grievance could also help reduce your tax bill even further.

There are many myths out there you may hear about filing a tax grievance. Don’t believe everything you hear or read. If you have questions about your property taxes, always contact a professional, such as Property Tax Adjusters, Ltd. to find out the truth.

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Herbert G. Pitkowsky, Esq.