6 Reasons to consult with a Broward Property Tax ConsultantJuly 20, 2016
Living in Broward, we know just how busy your life can be. Let Scarlet Oaks Tax Planners help you file your individual tax returns, amend an older tax return, file a late tax return, or find out what to expect after a major life change, our Broward tax professionals can help.
There are many national property tax consultant firms with offices in the Broward area. Generally speaking, having a property tax consultant located in the area of your property is more desirable than hiring someone from out of town. Since all real estate value is based on location, it’s good to have someone familiar with the location and also with the county tax assessor staff.
In the Broward Metropolitan area there are many property tax consulting firms. There are a couple of reasons for this. First, Florida tax law does not require that the counties appraise all properties every year, and infrequent appraisals often resulted in large percentage increases in value. Also, the county tax assessors’ values were incorrect in many cases and unfair (inequitable) in others. When property owners get large increases in tax assessments and corresponding tax bills in general they are outraged and want to do something about it. That is why there are so many property tax consultants in the Broward Metro area.
Since the start of the great recession, many people got into property tax consulting because of the decline in real estate values. Some of these people had some real estate appraisal experience. Some of them were realtors, some of them appraisers, but most of them had little or no idea what type of work the Florida tax assessors actually do.
It’s a good idea to use a Broward property tax consultant that is an intimately familiar with the mass appraisal process that the Florida tax assessors use. Mass appraisal is significantly different than other forms of real estate appraisal in that the tax assessor staffs are dealing with a universe of properties, developing models to value those properties, and testing those models with statistics.
Rather than appraising properties on an individual basis, properties are grouped by neighborhood or by property type and analyzed in groups. Mass appraisal models are used to appraise all of the properties in the groups. What matters most is how these computer-generated assessments compare to the sale prices for those properties that have sold. The tax assessors use median sale ratios to determine what their level of assessment is. They use a coefficient of dispersion to determine how confident they are in their level of assessment. They use price related differentials to be certain that they are not favoring any particular class or type of property.
Before choosing a Broward property tax consultant, it is a good idea to find out what their background is. How long have they been providing property tax reduction services? How long has the company they own or work for been in existence? It isn’t unreasonable to ask for a resume or qualifications brief to be certain of the experience of the person you hire to handle your property tax appeal.