Tips and Traps When Negotiating Real Estate: How Do You Appeal an Improvement?

How Do You Appeal an Improvement?

When you improve your property by, for example, adding a new room or putting on a new roof, you will likely get a new appraisal. Generally speaking, most counties will reevaluate your property at that time and often will significantly increase its value.

Again, appeal—first to the appraiser in person and then, if neces­sary, to the appeals board. It’s very helpful to bring along all the receipts for what the improvement cost. Any appraiser is going to be hard put to argue that your new room addition added $40,000 to the value of your property when you can prove it only cost $5,000. (But many appraisers will make the argument that the new room added more to the value than simply its cost. At this point, the argument usually turns to comparables.)

TRAP

Be careful about improving more than 50 percent of your property. In many jurisdictions, when you improve more than half the value, the entire property can be reevaluated. If you have an existing low evaluation, it can now shoot up to current market values. If you keep the improvement to less than 50 percent, fre­quently only the part improved can be reassessed.

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