Can you dispute a tax assessment after buying?

14 Replies

I am looking at a property that seems to be quite cheap for the area. Definitely a BRRRR project, though the taxes on it were increased 179% back in 2017. The taxes on it are enough to make the numbers on it not really work, even though it seems like the purchase price would be a steal. Is it possible to dispute them now or what that ship sailed?



The process of certiorari of tax assessment is normally done once a year.  Check with your local taxing authority, and be prepared with comparable sales that have lower taxes to bolster your case.

If there are large sums involved, think about hiring an attorney to do the pleading for review for you.  They will usually charge a portion of the tax saved the first year.  After that, you're good to go, assuming you get the tax reduced.

Remember, it is possible that during the review, the tax may actually be increased, depending on the finding of the taxing authority.



@Nick Troutman . Have your Agent run the comps and if it’s within market values you’ll have a tough time disputing it too much. Need to see inside finishes as well to truly show the value (not) of your property.

If the 179% is to bring it in alignment with the neighborhood you might have a tough time disputing it too much now. Best of luck.

In OR/WA, you need to build a really good case on why your TAV is too high.  LIke lots of good sales comps.

I don't know about TN, but we have tax appeal boards at the county level.  They hate doing adjusts though, hence you need a strong case.  

If it's a lot, you may want to look for guys that run these (usually ex-tax assessors) or attys that specialize in prop taxes.

@Nick Troutman

Yes you can challenge them after purchase; flexibility depends on the area. We have bought several in a nearby city and challenged taxes on probably close to a dozen (not at one time) after we purchase each and had taxes dropped on each one. Talk to your attorney & others in the area to get a feel for the flexibility. Best of luck!!

You can generally appeal within a certain time of the new assessment, most of the time the look back seems to be 1-3 years. This all depends on the city you are in, in my experience. Some cities will let you appeal at anytime during the year, other cities have windows of a month or two each year - if you miss the window you need to wait until the following year.  Most taxing authorities will list this info on their websites or call their office to ask. Good luck.