We are about three quarters of the way thru the year and Michigan’s winter tax bills are due out in two months. So most homeowners are wondering why their Michigan property taxes are not going down. Here is the basic scenario of what is going on. Your Oakland County property taxes can go up each year by 5% or the inflation index. They use the lesser of the two. So even if your Oakland County home value went down your Oakland County property taxes could go up.
You have to remember that it is your property taxes that run your local city and local county. So the assessor has a vested interest in not giving up the tax dollars. They really don’t want to lowerproperty tax assessments if they can help it. So many Michigan cities and Counties are having budget issues. So the property tax assessor is not lowering your property taxes by much.
Sure they are giving you a bone here and there. Lowering it a little bit just so you don’t go to the local tax boards of review in March. Then if you go to the local board of review most times they are turning you down. From the word on the street many cities are saying no to reducing your Oakland County Property tax assessment. The city knows that it takes time to go to the Michigan Tax Tribunal and most people won’t take the time or trouble to do it.
I did quite a few comparative market analysis for clients so they could take the comparable proof to the city of what sold like their home. Brighton Township’s board of review on most of my clients was a blanket NO! But when people appealed it to the Michigan Tax Tribunal Brighton Township then wanted to work with the Brighton Township property owners.
Quite a few cities were just saying no at the local boards of review even though there was solid proof that the home values WERE MUCH LOWER. So my advice to my clients is if they had the time to take it too the next level. Take it to the Michigan Tax Tribunal.
I don’t blame the cities for trying to hang on to the tax money. But at the same time times are tough and if the Michigan taxpayer is overpaying on his Oakland County property taxes then they should get relief. We all need to tighten our belts no matter if it is a city or a township.
Russ Ravary your Metro Detroit real estate agent
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