Heath's Blog

head_left_image

Property Tax Abatement Notes for Massachusetts

The Massachusetts state government web sitehas posted some suggestions to keep in mind if you are pursuing a Property Tax Abatement.  (You must request an abatement if to lower the tax if you believe the tax assessment on your property is too high.)  First, check for the forms you need in your local tax assessor's office.  If you'd like to see a printable form on-line, you can click here.  You cannot get started without the correct form. 

Next, the form needs to be filed at the town hall governing the property before the bill is due. The signature(s) of the owner(s) must be on the form, or the signature of their representative.  (If the signature is not the owners', you should provide some proof that the person signing the form has authority to do so.  Otherwise it can be rejected easily as an improperly filled out form.) 

If mailed, the postmark must be no later than the due date of the assessment bill.  If hand delivered, applications must be in the assessors possession by the close of business on the due date. 

Some towns have a very complete web site and others are still developing one.  Don't rely on the on-line information for your town though,because sometimes it is out of date.  A personal call or a visit to your town hall will insure you have current assessment information, and you can also clarify any "special circumstances" that your town may acknowledge or disallow.

You will also need a good estimate of the current value of your property.  That can be easily handled by a good local real estate professional that both lists and sells property.

Happy selling and listing!

Heath Coker, Associate Broker
Robert Paul Properties
www.CapeGroup.com / capegroup@capegroup.com
508-274-5613  Licensed in MA
Its a beautiful day on Cape Cod!
@CapeGroup  Skype: heath.coker

REindex.com, The Site Engine®
508-274-5613  reindex@reindex.com
See our 2 Minute YouTube www.REindex.com/WhatIsREindex.html
@RealEstateIndex

James Heath Coker | Create Your Badge

Comments

Saw this website on a google search for Tax Abatement. Property assessment has gone down quite a bit. Could we expect to be successful at getting our tax bill lowered? Or is filing the documents a big waste of time? Any thoughts?

Happy Holidays!

Neal Simmons

Pembroke MA

Posted by Neal Simmons over 10 years ago

That would be better asked at town hall. Expect the "waste of time answer", but you might get something like "a lot of people are doing it." Ask the tax assessor's office questions like, "How many people filed for an abatement this year/last year?" or "I'd like to comment on some abatement meetings, how do I find out who has applied for one?"

Ask others in town if they know anyone who has applied for one. Compare notes.

It appears that your assessment has flaws anyway. I see a 0 bedrooms, 960 sq ft ranch with 2040 sq ft of house? They at least need to fix your assessment to be correct. Of course, letting an assessor inside allows them to assess what they can see. But if you file for an abatement, they will probably need access to "verify" your claim. They have a value for your land that may be high, but the value for the house looks close to what you could drop a modular there for. So I would work on the latest land sales in particular. 

Also, if you calculate $11.65/$1000, what is your goal for the abatement? 50x11.56= would reduce it over $500 so it appears to be worth the questions.

If you have a valid issue, the town should work with you.

Posted by Associate Broker Falmouth MA Cape Cod Heath Coker, Heath Coker Robert Paul Properties Falmouth MA (http://www.CapeGroup.com & http://www.REindex.com) over 10 years ago

Hi,

If I file for a property tax abatement, I'm concerned that this will hurt my chances of selling the property down the road. So, how does tax abatement affect my property value in the future? I ask because I do plan on selling the next few years.

Thank you

Posted by D Chornovas almost 10 years ago

Hi,

If I file for a property tax abatement, I'm concerned that this will hurt my chances of selling the property down the road. So, how does tax abatement affect my property value in the future? I ask because I do plan on selling the next few years.

Thank you

Posted by D Chornovas almost 10 years ago

Hi D.  Getting an abatement will adjust the assessed value to a more current true assessment. It might actually be beneficial. Most real estate professionals are aware of the actual difference between the assessment and the market value of properties in their area.  Agents and Brokers know whether an assessment is helpful on specific properties.

For example, a new home in my town of Falmouth, may actually be assessed as land only, until the assessor gets his records updated.  In that case, the assessment is way off. And if a home hasn't sold in a while there may be no current sale history for the assessor to use to assess the current value. Further, if the building department doesn't communicate with the assessing department, then updates/ renovations may not be included in any current assessment. (The Falmouth Building department and Assessment department do not talk to each other.)

However, many buyers thinks that assessed value is a useful tool. So if the buyers looking at your house are with a real estate professional, they will be informed about assessed values relative to market value. If they are on their own without a professional, they may be confused about the corelation between assessed value and market Value.

Again, if you are in an area where the assessed value is supposed to be 100% and current, then you may have a concern.  However, most professionals are well aware of the assessed value to market value question for their market.

Posted by Associate Broker Falmouth MA Cape Cod Heath Coker, Heath Coker Robert Paul Properties Falmouth MA (http://www.CapeGroup.com & http://www.REindex.com) almost 10 years ago

Heath nice job with your article. I have written a very detailed post at The Massachusetts Real Estate blog about appealing Massachusetts Property Taxes.

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) over 9 years ago

Participate