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Sep 9, 2010

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Westminster, MD

Best way to lower property taxes

I don't think you have to have your home appraised. That would certainly be a basis for reduction, but I read through the process thinking I would try to get it reduced. It's more like putting an argument together. If you can site specific homes that are like yours in your neighborhood/area that have sold for less, that's proof of a decrease in value. The reason I never filed was because I bought my house 5 years ago at the peak of the bubble and the assessed value was less than I paid, so it's a little difficult saying it's not worth what I paid for it - even if it is, it's only gone down a little in value ($20K) and that's not much in terms of a tax break. You have to file the forms before the first of the year as I recall. The biggest obstacle may be that homes are not selling so getting good comparisons are difficult, which is where an appraisal comes in. My mom successfully reduced her home assessment a few years ago in Baltimore County and just had to write up the rationale behind why she thought it was not worth what she was assessed at. She got it reduced by $100,000.  (Sep 9, 2010 | post #7)