North Dakota Property Tax Appeals & Important Dates
Consulting an experienced property tax advisor at Savage & Browning may make the difference in a successful reduction of your real estate taxes in your North Dakota county auditor valuation appeal.
Most property owners fail to protest their property’s valuation because they aren't aware of their options, don’t understand the complicated process, or have access to the resources to substantiate a claim stating their property is overvalued. We have a proven history for successfully reducing valuations for a diverse range of property types by effectively analyzing your property’s value using one or more of the established valuation approaches.
We represent North Dakota property owners in their county tax appraisal appeal. We have won successful real estate property tax reductions for our clients in Cass County, Burleigh County, Grand Forks County, Ward County, Williams County, Stark County, Morton County, Stutsman County, Richland County, McKenzie County as well as in every corner of even the smallest Nebraska county.
We often are able to find more compelling reasons for reduction and additional favorable comparable properties to support the appeal in the more urban areas of Fargo, Bismarck, Grand Forks, Minot, West Fargo, Williston, Dickinson, Mandan, Jamestown and Wahpeton.
Fair Market Value by County Assessors
In North Dakota assessors in each county are responsible for valuing all property February 1 of each year. Properties are appraised in the most fair manner possible and the North Dakota Taxpayer Bill of Rights requires that real property be valued uniformly and proportionately.
What are valid reasons to protest your North Dakota property valuation?
A property owner may protest their real property valuation with the county assessor and board of equalization if they think their property is assessed for more than its actual market value (valuation) or disproportionately valued in relation to similar comparable properties (equalization).
Appealing County Valuation
The first and simplest step is to contact your county assessor and ask to have your property reevaluated. The assessor will visit the property, reevaluate it and inform you of any changes in assessed value. If you are unable to resolve your issue or concern after reevaluation, an appeal may be filed with the local board of equalization in advance of the 2nd Monday in April.
If you are still dissatisfied with your property valuation an appeal may be made to the County Board of Equalization which meets in the first 10 days of June. Owners/representatives may appeal in person or in writing to provide evidence to support the claim. Owners have the option of bypassing the local board of equalization and appeal directly to the County Board of Equalization.
If the owner still dispute's the Country Board of Equalization's value he or she may appeal to the State Board of Equalization which meets the 2nd Tuesday in August. Note: the State Board cannot make any adjustments if the owner did not first appeal to both the local and county boards of equalization.
At this point, all informal appeals are exhausted and if the property owner still claims the assessment is excessive or invalid may file for abatement with the county auditor before November 1st of the year following the year that the tax becomes delinquent.
Valid claims for abatement include:
- Assessment or tax invalid, inequitable or unjust
- Error made in entry, description, valuation, extension of tax
- Improvement did not exist on assessment date (February 1st)
- Applicant had no interest in property on assessment date
- Property is exempt
- Taxes erroneously paid
- Property assessed/taxed more that once in year
- Building destroyed/damaged by fire, flood, or tornado
- Homestead credit application filed after State Board of Equalization
- Payment of tax under protest
The applicant/representative authorizes the auditor to inspect the property, attends all hearings and presents evidence to support the claim.
County Commissioners may approve or disapprove of the application in whole or part. Reasons for rejection must be provided in writing on the back of the application.
If still dissatisfied the owner may file a notice of appeal with the clerk of the District Court within 30 days of the country commission's decision for a final decision.
Don’t delay. Contact Savage & Browning today and let us get a jump on valuing your real properties and determining the best cases to be made for assessment reduction.
With the uncertainty of Covid-19 shutting down many businesses, property owners have seen unprecedented shifts in cash flow from shuttered businesses or residential tenants who lost the ability to pay rent. Additionally, there are other considerations that can be presented to justify assessment reductions:
- Equitability of the Assessment
- Building Age and Type
- Needed Improvements and Repairs
- All Forms of Depreciation / Obsolescence
- Highest & Best Use of Your Property
As a part of our long history, our team worked hard over the years to build and maintain positive relationships with the various assessor offices and other property tax professionals. These relationships facilitate appeal and negotiation since we have proven our credibility time and again.
We start each engagement with a Real Estate Appraisal Review that includes:
- Obtaining data from you, the client and taxing authorities.
- We identify appraisal methods used in assessing properties and audit the results for accuracy.
- We aggressively seek and secure refunds for past years tax over-payments when inaccurate assessments are identified.
- We use cost, market and income approaches in preparing appeals for presentation to taxing authorities.
- We review the assessed value of comparable properties to ensure fair and equal standards.
- We use comparable assessments and calculations of cash equivalency values in presentations to taxing authorities.
If we determine that your real estate valuation by the county is unjustifiably too high, we go to bat for you throughout the entire Real Estate Property Tax Appeal Process:
- We arrange for and conduct diligent, informal settlement discussions with taxing authorities.
- When advisable, we file written protests with tax appraisal review boards for all unsuccessful appeals at the informal level.
- We attend hearings and offer personal presentations of expert testimony before tax appraisal review boards to support lower values.
- If appropriate, we recommend legal counsel and provide support services for continuing an appeal at the state level.
Throughout the entire process you will receive status reports and so you know where we stand in your property tax valuation reduction appeal:
- A preliminary tax savings report using estimated tax rates.
- A final tax savings report using actual tax rates and identifying savings by property.
- A tax comparison report on a property-by-property basis including current and prior year's values and taxes.
- A narrative report pertaining to research, analysis, and negotiation activity.
Once we have established a familiarity with your property we are prepared to Administer your real estate property tax valuation on an annual basis, always looking for opportunities to appeal and reduce valuations or mitigate increases in valuation.
On your behalf we will:
- Respond to inquiries from taxing authorities.
- Provide tax estimates for accrual and budgeting purposes.
- On a timely basis, obtain, audit and forward tax bills to clients with an approval letter.
- Seek and secure corrected tax bills where inaccuracies are discovered.
- Upon request, provide clients with copies of parcel maps from taxing authorities.
- Verify the property tax proration on escrow closing statements for acquisitions or dispositions.
|Feb 01||Assessment Date|
|Mar||Value Notices Issued|
|Mar 01||Tax Bills Due||1st half installment|
|Mar – Apr||Appeal Deadline|
|Oct 15||Tax Bills Due||2nd half installment|
|Personal Property Exempt|
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