Frequently Asked Questions
Why do I need to provide information on the value of my house and on "comparable" homes?
Most assessors will not lower your taxes without factual, objective third party evidence that your property's market value is lower than the assessed value. Our Basic, Deluxe and Premier FairValue Reports provide the information needed to maximize your chances for a successful assessment appeal.
What does "time-shifted" mean?
Most property tax authorities require that the assessed value be calculated "as-of" a specific date. This assures that all properties are valued at the same time providing an "apples to apples" comparison. As we have seen in the past several years, values can change dramatically in a relatively short period of time.
For example, if your property's assessed value is calculated "as of January 1" then, in order to appeal the assessed value you will need to obtain an estimated market value "as-of" the same date. The comparable sales supporting the estimated value should (and often must) occur near, but not after January 1st. All of our products properly account for and meet the "as-of" dates required by your local tax authority. Both the value of your home and the comparable values we provide are all synchronized to that date. The failure to provide values based on the correct "as of" date is one of the reasons many tax appeals are rejected. Most sites that provide free value estimates do not have the ability to time-shift the value.
Will an appraiser come to my house?
Our Basic and Deluxe products provide you with our Automated Valuation Model (AVM) based FairValue Report, which is generally acceptable to assessors and used by many financial institutions for property valuation. If you choose our Premier product, you will be contacted by an appraiser. The Premier FairValue Report utilizes the Form 2055 Residential Appraisal Report. This form is completed by a local, licensed appraiser who will conduct a thorough exterior inspection but will not require a full walk- through.
I am confident that I can obtain and fill out the tax assessor forms myself. Can I just get the basic valuation information from you?
Yes. Just purchase the FairValue Report-Basic version. This is our lowest cost solution and is ideal for someone who has already filed the appeal forms and just needs valuation and comparable sales data.
I changed my mind. These appeal forms are too confusing. Can I upgrade?
Yes. If you already purchased the FairValue - Basic report, you can upgrade to the FairValue Deluxe report. With the Deluxe version, you can go through our friendly interview process and get your assessor's tax forms, filled out and ready to submit.
I have an expensive, "jumbo" property that doesn't have available comps. Can you help?
Yes. Purchase our FairValue Report - Premium version. We will arrange with a local appraiser to have a Residential Appraisal Report completed by a licensed, local appraiser..
I have duplexes, four-plex apartments, and condos. Can you help?
Yes. Purchase our FairValue Report - Premium version. We will arrange with a local appraiser to have a Residential Appraisal Report completed by a licensed, local appraiser and if required can provide Operating Income Statements and Comparable Rent Schedules at a nominal additional charge.
Why offer an appraisal (Premier) if the Basic or Deluxe is good enough?
The Basic and Deluxe FairValue Reports work well for houses that are less customized and that have multiple comparables sales available. We estimate that the less expensive Basic and Deluxe FairValue Report will be sufficient for a majority of homeowners. Our Premier FairValue Report is best suited for 1-4 family investment properties, high value homes, unique homes with special features, or homes located in rural areas where comparables aren't readily available.
Don't worry - if you are trying to purchase the less expensive FairValue report and it is insufficient for your home, we will let you know. You will have the opportunity to upgrade to the appraisal based Premier FairValue Report.
Can I file my appeal at any time?
No. You must appeal during the window specified by your tax authority. Your tax assessor's notice usually provides the window of appeal dates for you. We also offer an interactive map of the United States on our website that describes the approximate tax appeal windows for various jurisdictions. It is not uncommon for an assessment to occur "off-cycle". Be sure to pay attention to any notices you receive and appeal when appropriate.
After I file my appeal, am I done?
Not typically. Be sure to review and understand the appeal process in your jurisdiction. It is usually the taxpayer's responsibility to file the appeal and respond to additional instructions in a timely manner. Be sure to respond to all correspondence that you receive from your tax assessor. Depending on your jurisdiction, you may need to appear before an Appeal or Equalization Board, or simply wait for a decision to be made.
Why buy the FairValue Report now?
Purchasing our Fair Value Report is the first step in filing your property assessment appeal. Documenting a lower valuation for your home can prevent you from paying more than your fair share in property taxes.
I am worried that prices will continue to drop. What should I do?
Sign up for our free FairValue Monitoring. We will periodically remind you about the new value of your home and when to file an appeal.
You haven't answered my question in this FAQ. How can I get it answered?
Just email us at email@example.com and we will respond as soon as possible.