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Disputing Your Lakewood Ranch Rental Property Value Assessment to Lower Tax Liability

Lowering the tax liability on your Lakewood Ranch rental property is absolutely worth the effort if you get the opportunity. Regardless if you are new to rental property investment or a seasoned pro, studying your Lakewood Ranch property value assessment to verify its accuracy is time well spent.  

At Real Property Management Sarasota & Manatee, we advise all of our landlords to take the time to do this because you might learn that your assessment is too high, which once re-evaluated can lead to lower property taxes. There are various ways to determine the accuracy of your current property assessment.

How a Property Should be Assessed

Properties are usually assessed by a town or city’s assessor annually. In most cases, the assessor evaluates the current status of your property and any improvements made and the current market conditions for similar homes in your location, and then they multiply that by the area’s level of assessment as decided by the municipality. If you own a multi-family building, the assessor will factor in the income earned from the property over the past year minus maintenance costs into the valuation. The cost of home replacement is also a consideration in determining its assessment.

If you look at your annual property tax bill and nearly collapse from shock at the figures, take a few deep breaths and then carefully consider the options you have to lower the tax bill. One thing to consider, however, is that you’ll have a deadline to dispute the assessment. Most municipalities will give 30 to 60 days after you receive the assessment to challenge it.

How to Understand an Assessment

Observe what the assessment says about your property. You might discover that you’ve suddenly become the owner of Lakewood Ranch property that is nothing like the one you actually have. For example, the assessment might mistakenly give your house four bedrooms when it only has three or place your address in an upscale neighborhood near your actual location. In one case, a homeowner’s one-story home with vaulted ceilings was erroneously listed as a two-story house and charged double the actual square footage because the assessor evaluated it from outside rather than doing a more detailed inspection.

The value of similar properties in your neighborhood can say a lot about your own property’s assessment. If you are friends with your neighbors, you might be able to learn from their assessment. Otherwise, it’s a good idea to compare your property with four or five in your general vicinity that have the same amount of square footage and the same property size.

Look into Exemptions

While taking the time to make sure the valuation of the property is right, also look into whether you’re receiving any exemptions to which you’re entitled. A number of states and many municipalities give breaks to owners who are senior citizens or veterans, homes located in specific areas, and many other exemptions. Your local tax assessor can help you find any tax breaks to which you’re entitled.

If the first tax bill after you purchased your property shows that its tax assessment value went up by nearly 50 percent in one year, as what happened to an owner in Georgia, you’ll want to ask for a review to help you understand any changes. Most tax assessors are willing to informally explain your assessment. If you’re not satisfied with the informal explanation, you can file a formal appeal. Property owners who went this route say they’ve been able to lower their assessments substantially.


When you work with Real Property Management Sarasota & Manatee, we help you get the most out of your property and navigate it to success.

To learn more about the services we offer, contact us today.


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