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Tax Saving Tips from Alameda County Assessor's Office for New Homeowners

The following was emailed to me by the Alameda County Assessor's office and I've highlighted in red, what to pay attention to. How to estimate your new assessed value: If you recently purchased your new home at market price, your new assessed value will likely be the purchase price. However, if you purchased the new property for below market price, the new assessed value will be the market value. Market value can be estimated by looking at the recent sale prices of comparable properties in the same area. If you disagree with the assessed value of your new property and believe it should be lower, you can formally appeal the assessment to the Assessment Appeals Board (AAB). Appeals of regular assessments must be filed between July 2 and September 15. Appeals of Supplemental or Escape Assessments must be filed within 60 days of the date of “Notice of Supplemental Assessment” or “Notice of Enrollment of Escape Assessment” or the postmark date for that notice, whichever is later. All appeal applications must be filed with the Clerk of the Board. These forms may be obtained by calling (510) 272-6352 or by visiting the Clerk’s website HERE. The AAB will consider all evidence presented by the property owner and the Assessor’s Office at a formal hearing. The AAB will determine the value of the property in question. For information on how to prepare and present your assessment appeal, visit the California State Board of Equalization website and view a video segment or review the “Residential Property Assessment Appeals” brochure. How does making changes to a newly purchased home impact your assessed value: Under California state law, your property tax may increase due to “New Construction” activity. “New Construction” refers to any improvements to your home other than normal maintenance or repair. When construction is performed, the changed or new portion of your home may be reassessed at market value, thus increasing your property’s assessment value. If you make changes to your home that are not exempt from reassessment or part of normal maintenance, then your tax may be increased, and you will be required to report your new construction to the Assessor’s Office. This report will allow the Assessor to adjust your assessment based on the improvement at market value, which will be added to your existing value. Property tax savings programs available for new homeowners: There may be property tax savings programs available to you as a new homeowner, such as the Homeowners’ Exemption and the Disabled Veterans’ Exemption. For specific information and forms required to claim these exemptions, please visit my website HERE.

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