Hooked on HuntingPa
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Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Schuylkill county
Re: Appealing Tax Assessment?
Did you just purchase the camp?? How much time has gone by since the purchase?
Let me say a few things that might do against you but I'll try to help. Not trying to give you any bad mojo,just feel you should know what your up against.
If you purchased the camp for say 50K and they are saying the camp is say 60K, you have to prove the value of the property is still at 50K. Here is what happens:
They say with the ajoining properties, value of the camp,property that the camp sits on,etc,is NOW worth more than the price you paid. Just because you paid 50K,the courts will not look at what you paid but what the value is. The county usually has a person that testifies for them and says that the property is worth XXXX. That person is usually a real estate agent hired by the county. They have a license to prove that they feel the property is worth XXXX. What helps is if you have another real estate agent that will testify FOR you and say it's only worth this $$$$$. This is leagal for them to do this in the sate of PA. It' been fought long and hard but still it's legal. WHY??? Well, if I had a person sell me a house and I slipped them 30K under the table and said, hey,we're gonna write this up for 20K for a 50K house, the legal document will show the purchase went thru the courthouse as showing the property sold for $20K,when reality the property is worth so much more. Now the County, school districts, township,etc base their taxes that they charge on you---on the value. With all the belt tightening going around, all of the counties,townships,etc are looking for more money.
So thats why they are going out there and watching--especially new purchases, and not going by the old values.
You can try this yourself by searching all of the ajoining properties that are similair to yours and see what their properties are valued at. Use this info to bring to court during the tax hearing. TAKE PICTURES!!!! Use the same court documents and tax info that they will use against you. Now you know why I'm saying use a real estate agent. If the purchase was just made, use the same agent that sold the house to you and have him testify why he sold the camp at the price he did. You end up with his reputation against the other agent....Not always good. If you hire an attorney, look for one that has real estate history. If you get a settlement company, use a popular one. I know one in Tioga county but that propbably doesn't help you.
Not sure it's any help for you but If I think of anything else, I'll get back to you. Wish I could do more.
Now for even more bad news. Now this is only my assessment of what takes place in my county in Schuylkill. When these cases go to court, most times, they side with the school district,county,township,etc. Unless they have really good proof,it doesn't go far.