In most areas of the country annual property taxes are due for nearly all residential property, vacant land, and most private businesses alike, excluding nonprofit organizations, government buildings and other specific organizations. State and local governments have done a respectable job in most areas to make available exemptions to reduce the cost to many in the general public; exemptions includes; homestead, widow, military, seniors, persons with disabilities, and many more that vary state by state.
What if you feel you’re still paying too much in yearly property taxes?
Mobile homes that are attached to their own land are taxed in most areas as Real Property. This means that your mobile home is taxed similar to the guy down the street with the million dollar mansion. Most states do not give mobile home owners a method of choice for how they would like to be taxed. Most of the time we are a good citizens, receive our yearly tax bills, and mail in our checks.
Actual mobile homes themselves (whether on land or inside mobile home parks) depreciate in value; their ‘Life Cycle’ is related more to that of an automobile than a traditional site build house. Yet you won’t hear me complaining that the retail value decreases laterally with county assessed value. In most cases while assessed values decrease, the need for affordable housing along with my monthly rents increase. However if there is even a chance for loophole that can reduce our yearly manufactured home property tax bill I’m all for it.
Some states including Ohio allow the owners of mobile homes attached to land purchased prior to 2000, to decide if their homes should be taxed on a ‘Depreciation Method’ or ‘Appraisal Method’ (the method used by most states today). Other states make other concessions for this natural depreciation factor. How can those of us that are left with no option fight back to reduce our costs?
It is for this reason that while in Florida and now, living in Texas, I will persistently file claims with my local county’s property tax assessor’s office. My claim you ask? I lightly demand that my mobile home taxable value be reassessed to a lesser value because of its inferior quality and construction grade compared to traditional site built property. From county to county forms will vary. In most cases an appraiser is never even sent out to the property.
I have had personal successes that varied county by county, year to year, and county employee to county employee. I find that every time I present my argument it rarely falls on deaf ears. I do not always get reductions on every one of my properties but the saving has been significant over the years.
“A penny saved is a penny earned.” – Benjamin Franklin
– John Fedro