Elevated Assessments and Egos at the tax assessor’s office

Here’s a HUGE dilemma I am seeing more and more often in South Florida and because of the proposed property tax amendment that goes to vote on January 29th, a lot of people are not focusing on the day to day issues that need to be addressed. I am sure Florida is not the only one suffering from this disease……..you tell me.

Plenty of properties are assessed higher than their real current value. And it’s not bad enough that buyers have the liberty to get picky and negotiate to death, but when they see a tax bill that doesn’t make sense, they not only start questioning the process but they also question Realtors and their ethics.

Because many agents failed to disclose to their customers what their property taxes would increase to when the market was HOT, there’s doubt in the air and the consumer feels like the truth is still not being told and they are afraid they are being taken for a ride (with every right, I might add).

We have a listing right now that is assessed at over 1/2 million dollars – the property was inherited by a gentleman that hired us to sell it. It is owned free and clear and the owner would love to sell it quickly (wouldn’t we all). When we suggested a price lower than the assessed value, he thought we were a bit crazy but trusted us. The issue is that the house needs a LOT of work and is now priced $180,000 under the assessed value and we are having difficulty selling it! There has been a lot of interest but when prospective buyers see the assessed value and the $12,000 tax bill, they run away scared without even looking back.

You will love this one…..it definitely takes the cake. One interested buyer contacted the tax appraiser’s office to inquire about appealing the current assessment and the tax appraiser’s office had the nerve to tell the customer that it would be impossible to decrease the assessment, that the idea of an appeal by his Realtor was absurd and that ultimately, if he could not afford the $12,000 tax bill, he should not buy the house.

Oh how I wish I had the name of that individual at the tax assessor’s office!!!!

But instead, I’m choosing to focus my energy in helping our real estate customers that fall into similar traps and give them step by step instructions on how to start appealing those taxes before sales fall through because of plain ineptitude. It’s never boring is it?

** original post on AgentGenius.com **

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