Discuss Detroit Archives - Beginning January 2007 Protesting a Tax Assessment Previous Next
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Mackcreative
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Username: Mackcreative

Post Number: 19
Registered: 08-2006
Posted on Thursday, February 01, 2007 - 4:12 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Has anyone ever protested their tax assessment in the city of Detroit? Either successfully or unsuccessfully, what sort of documentation was asked for, any advice would be greatly appreciated. The city is going to raise our taxes by $3,000 for 2008, they reassessed our property to be valued at $55,000 more than we paid for it in November, 2006.
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Detroitplanner
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Username: Detroitplanner

Post Number: 916
Registered: 04-2006
Posted on Thursday, February 01, 2007 - 4:35 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I've never protested. My assessment is finally to be about where it should be. It does not really impact my taxes as my taxed amount is way below my assessed amount still.
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Bobj
Member
Username: Bobj

Post Number: 1690
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Thursday, February 01, 2007 - 4:43 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I knew someone on the Tax Appeal Board in another city in Michigan. he told me to be very careful about protesting the assessment. Most assessments are low for a variety of reasons. The burdon of proof is on you. The Board could agree to "inspect" your property and find that 1/2 bath never recorded or the kitchen that got remodeled without a permit and so and so on.

Some people win, my friend said about 10% where he was and about 10% had their taxes go up.
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Mackcreative
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Username: Mackcreative

Post Number: 20
Registered: 08-2006
Posted on Thursday, February 01, 2007 - 4:55 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Not too worried what they'd find if they inspected, would only bolster my case. The house is completely unlivable-no electrical, heating/cooling, plumbing, heck there is not a single wall intact. I have plenty of proof too from all the city permits to recent bank appraisal. For what they've assessed the value to be it sure would be nice to be able to live there, not have to rent elsewhere.
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Swingline
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Username: Swingline

Post Number: 697
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Thursday, February 01, 2007 - 5:33 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

File your appeal immediately. Deadline is very short from when you get your new assessment. Since yours is a recent purchase, the SEV and the taxable value should be the same and should be equal to one-half of the fair market value of the property. The law requires that the SEV be equal to one-half of FMV. Taxable value is often less that SEV because annual increases to taxable value are capped. In some cases, SEV can exceed one-half of what one recently paid for a house. This ensures that gift or insider purchases at below market value can't be relied on to unfairly reduce taxes.

Since your house is a complete rehab project, you will need to attend the appeal hearing armed with copies of your purchase agreement, pictures of the current condition and estimates of the costs of the renovations. (In fact, if you can get this material together before the appeal deadline, you should include it with your letter of appeal.) Present these materials and the appeal board should reduce your SEV/Taxable value to around one-half of what you paid for the property. If they don't, you can appeal to the Michigan Tax Tribunal. You'll likely get relief at that level.
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Mackcreative
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Username: Mackcreative

Post Number: 21
Registered: 08-2006
Posted on Thursday, February 01, 2007 - 5:39 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Thanks so much for the help Swingline! Luckily I have all this information, and it is very recent.
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Charlottepaul
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Username: Charlottepaul

Post Number: 373
Registered: 10-2006
Posted on Thursday, February 01, 2007 - 7:39 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

P.S. Let us know how it turns out. I am very interested to know.
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Bobj
Member
Username: Bobj

Post Number: 1691
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Thursday, February 01, 2007 - 10:42 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Good luck! I would love to hear a success story!
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Jams
Member
Username: Jams

Post Number: 4671
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Thursday, February 01, 2007 - 10:52 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I received my new assessment on some property I own this week, my new tax is $0.31 more than last year.

It cost more than that to mail the notice to me.
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Boshna
Member
Username: Boshna

Post Number: 152
Registered: 01-2005
Posted on Friday, February 02, 2007 - 12:10 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

A related question: I am about to buy a bank-owned property for $68,000 that was assessed for $144,000 when it changed hands in 2005. Will the city reassess the property based on my sales price, or will it keep the assessment high? The property needs cosmetic work, but is structurally sound.

Also, the property doesn't currently have a homestead exemption on it. I believe that I need to apply for that before April. Will that go into effect in July?

Final question: The NEZ. The property is in EEV. When can I apply for the NEZ easement? When will the reduced millage go into effect?

Thank you all.
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Goose
Member
Username: Goose

Post Number: 29
Registered: 02-2005
Posted on Friday, February 02, 2007 - 1:26 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

an appraisal done by a competent licenced appraiser is your best bet (why, i just happen to be one), most people go to the board unprepared or just complain because they are higher than their neighbors on both sides, with an appraisal, its a formal document, and if done correctly, theres little the board can do to argue against it (but they can, they have no obligation to agree with you no matter what you present)......
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Ro_resident
Member
Username: Ro_resident

Post Number: 203
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Friday, February 02, 2007 - 8:12 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

If I read your question correctly, I see two separate issues.

1. Your assessed value--I have protested in RO. I was unsuccessful.

2. It looks like your will have been in your house for the second year in 2008. Assuming your house is not a new build in the past few years--under Proposal A the taxable value can be uncapped when there is a change in ownership.

In the second year you get slammed on the tax increase and have to catch up on the unpaid taxes from the first year.

As others have said, it is a very good idea to do your homework before going to the board. So you are on the right track.
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Swingline
Member
Username: Swingline

Post Number: 699
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Friday, February 02, 2007 - 10:13 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Boshna, first, a couple of your figures need to be straightened out. What do you mean that the property was "assessed" at $144K. Is that the SEV or the taxable value? Is it the actual number or are you doubling it? Strictly speaking, a $144K SEV means that the city assessor believes that the property is worth $288K. I don't believe that any houses are selling for near that amount in East English Village. (Since you're talking about a homestead exemption, I'm assuming that this property is a single family home.) Certainly the assessor in Detroit overreaches but I think that $288K is pretty far out there. So, can you clarify what you mean? If the SEV and/or taxable value is actually $144K, that would seem to be quite a bit too high for that neighborhood unless there is something very unique about the property.

Now, as for your $68,000 purchase price, I think that it is unlikely that you will get a new assessment of $34K. Your purchase price isn't conclusive of the "market value" measurement imposed by state law. Purchase price is only one factor, albeit the biggest one.

As for the homestead exemption, the application should be provided to you at the closing on your purchase.
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Boshna
Member
Username: Boshna

Post Number: 155
Registered: 01-2005
Posted on Friday, February 02, 2007 - 11:50 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

The value I gave is not the taxable value or the SEV. Those numbers are about equal (it's changed hands in the past couple years). The SEV is around 72k
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Swingline
Member
Username: Swingline

Post Number: 700
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Friday, February 02, 2007 - 1:14 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Boshna, thanks for the clarification. Things make a lot more sense now. This year's assessments have already been made. Your property won't be reassessed until this time next year so you're stuck with the current assessment. (Option: if you're sure that you are buying, but you haven't closed yet, you might try to persuade the bank to start the appeal process.)The homestead exemption should be prorated to the date it is filed thereby reducing the annual tax bill that you will owe. The title company person should be able to fill you in on this.
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Boshna
Member
Username: Boshna

Post Number: 156
Registered: 01-2005
Posted on Friday, February 02, 2007 - 2:05 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Thanks swingline
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Eastside_charlie
Member
Username: Eastside_charlie

Post Number: 2
Registered: 02-2007
Posted on Thursday, February 08, 2007 - 2:07 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

They always find a way NOT to lower your assessment,unless you know someone inside.
I tried and failed.
I believe Detroit has the HIGHEST Property tax rate in the NATION!, Hamtramck is up there too.
My total Prop tax came to about 4.1% !!!!!! insane.

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