Thursday, April 12, 2012

Suffolk County Property Tax Grievance Filings - Small Window of Opportunity

Generally speaking, the fair market value of both residential and commercial property throughout New York State has decreased over the past few years. One would think that the Suffolk County assessor's would realize how the economy has adversely affected the local real estate values and thus lower tax assessments accordingly. No such luck. For the vast majority of properties in Suffolk County, the assessments have remained the same over the past several years. Making matters worse, although assessments have not decreased, tax rates have increased. Property owners and tax paying tenants must resort to tax certiorari proceedings in an effort to reduce their tax burden.

On May 1, 2012, the tax assessments for the Ten Towns in Suffolk County, NY will be published. Complaints to each of the town assessors can only be filed from May 1, 2012 through May 17, 2012. A word to the wise, have your Suffolk County tax assessment evaluated on May 1, 2012. Compare the market value the assessor "guesses" to the amount you would expect to receive on a sale of your property. If your assessment is appropriate, celebrate and make a donation to your favorite charity! However, if your assessment is too high, you must file a complaint with your assessor within the two week period listed above. If your property is in a Village, keep in mind a separate examination will need to be done for your Village tax assessment as the Village assessor's market value might be vastly different from the Town assessor's market value.

Beware, once the deadline passes, the assessment will be set in stone and the tax rate increase will not be known until the December bill.