Q & A: Property Taxes

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  1. Are property taxes deductible?
  2. Are taxes on second homes deductible?
  3. How is a home's value determined?
  4. What are property taxes?
  5. What is an escrow/impound account?
  6. Where can I learn more about appealing my property taxes?

Are property taxes deductible?

Yes, in most cases a homeowner’s property tax may be used as a deduction on their income taxes.  Of course, you will want to speak with your financial advisor to understand your particular situation.

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Are taxes on second homes deductible?

Property taxes paid on a second home can be tax deductible. To see if you qualify to deduct your second home taxes, speak with a financial advisor.

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How is a home's value determined?

A home’s value can be determined using multiple techniques.

- CMA: Prior to listing your home, a real estate agent will perform a Comparative Market Analysis (CMA) which estimates the value of your home based on recent sales of similar homes your area.

- Appraisal: Lenders require that an appraisal be performed prior to closing to ensure the home’s value is not less than the loan amount. Appraisers also base their estimates on prior sales in the area, square footage, location, and home features and upgrades.

- Assessment: Assessments are periodically performed on homes by local governments to evaluate the home’s property taxes. Since property taxes are based on property value, features such as location, size of lot, age of home, and home condition are factored into the assessment.

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What are property taxes?

Property taxes are taxes imposed on land and homeowners to fund local public services. Taxes are a percentage of the property’s value, but exact formulas vary by local areas. To learn more about how property taxes are calculated and used in your area, contact your local tax commissioner.  

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What is an escrow/impound account?

An escrow account, also known as an impound account, is often required of buyers by lenders to reserve cash for costs such as taxes, insurance, etc…

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Where can I learn more about appealing my property taxes?

Each area will have a different appeal process and requirements, contact your local tax appraiser’s office to obtain information on appealing your property tax.   

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