Some city councils in Shelby County may be turning to the property tax rate to help balance an ever-increasing budget deficit.
The Memphis Commercial Appeal reported this week that both Memphis and Collierville are considering increasing their property tax rates to make up for significant shortfalls in the city budget.
The news comes as the appeal window for the most recent property assessments in Shelby County approaches on May 1, when residents may begin appealing their assessment to the Shelby County Board of Equalization.
In this story, the Commercial Appeal reports that the Collierville Board of Mayor and Aldermen will consider a 32- to 33-cent property tax increase at a budget meeting Thursday, April 21. The town says the move is necessary to make up a $3.4 million deficit in the 2012 fiscal budget.
If approved, the tax rate would go from $1.18 to $1.52 per $100 of assessed value for residential and commercial property, an increase of potentially several hundred dollars per property owner.
Collierville officials say they’ve cut as much as possible and now need to look elsewhere.
In Memphis, the Commerical Appeal reports here that city councilman Shea Flinn is proposing a one-time property-tax assessment to raise $43 million owed to Memphis City Schools, though the general feeling is that the proposal won’t be adopted.
Flinn’s proposal is for a 39-cent property-tax assessment. The proposal goes back to 2008, when the council cut $57 million in funding from Memphis City Schools and was subsequently ordered by three different courts to pay the school district the money.
The proposal amounts to a 12% property tax increase and would be a one-time thing and would not remain on property tax bills. Like the Collierville increase, it could amount to several hundred dollars in increased taxes for property owners.
Shelby County and ValueAppeal are no strangers to each other. In 2010, ValueAppeal determined that about 35% of homeowners in the County were overassessed. Of those who utilized ValueAppeal’s service, 97.3% were successful in filing an appeal to lower their assessment and save on their taxes. That’s even higher than ValueAppeal’s national success rate of about 80%.
ValueAppeal provided those homeowners with the evidence needed to be successful. At the same time, we turned away about 65% of homeowners in Shelby County who we determined had been assessed correctly and didn’t qualify for our service, saving the county from frivolous appeals and saving the homeowner time in filing an appeal that might not be successful.
The Shelby County customers who had success in using ValueAppeal saw an average of almost $1,800 in taxes saved per household, with an average of a 12% reduction in their assessed value, and some went as high as 29%.
Clearly, ValueAppeal is able to help homeowners in Shelby County, and the County is clearly willing to lower an assessment when presented with the right evidence. Shelby County residents can appeal from May 1 to June 30, so if you’d like to see if you might be among those able to see savings on your property taxes, visit ValueAppeal.com and see what we can do for you.