The weather is back! The new polar vortex slamming the northeast isn’t just making it unpleasant to go outdoors, it can be a serious threat to your home, income and could leave you paying more than your fair share in property taxes.
Here’s what to watch out for and do about it…
Direct Property Damage
Snow, wind and freezing temperatures can do some serious damage to homes. It can wreck your plumbing, cause roof failures and even render parts of your home unlivable. Your property taxes are based on your tax assessment and estimated value of your home. If severe weather reduces that value, then your assessment and bill should go down as well. Just don’t expect the county to voluntarily give you the credit you deserve.
After all, it was just discovered that the last tax assessment changes ‘accidentally’ wiped out exemptions for veterans. A group who should be over close to $200,000 in refunds.
Storms can lead to a lot of residual damage too. Flooding is a great example of that. With the melting snow, flooding can destroy homes and create toxic mold. If you don’t have specific coverage for flood, then your property insurance carrier may decline to offer a payout.
Even if your home withstands the weather, damage to neighboring homes and county and municipal property can wield some harsh blows to your property value and tax bills. If neighbors have to sell cheap due to damage, that can lower the value of your property overnight. Again, that should mean a lower tax bill. Just don’t count on it being offered up voluntarily.
If the city or county deem they need more money for services during increasingly bad storm seasons or to make repairs, guess how they get it? By raising your property taxes.
The Weather & Your Income
The polar vortex has also been forcing businesses to close and has been keeping shoppers at home. Missed work and missing customers can hit you in the bank account. That’s on top of the recent government shutdown. So, before you blow your income tax refund, make sure you have enough cash on hand to get you through.
What to Do Now
If you are facing any of the above issues due to the current weather situation, or are even still struggling with the aftermath of past storms, be sure to get help from Property Tax Adjusters, Ltd. We can help challenge your tax assessment and ensure you aren’t over paying.