TULSA COUNTY PROPERTY TAXES
It’s January and many of you may be receiving a piece of mail from the Tulsa County Assessor’s office. It will say, “This is Not a Bill,” but it’s still worth checking out. You will get this notice if the assessment on your property has changed or if your property was not on the tax records the previous year.
If you purchased your home last year, you will likely get this notice if you paid more for your home than it sold for in the past. (More on that in a bit!) If you feel the assessment is incorrect, you have 30 calendar days to file an informal appeal with the County Assessor. You simply call the Assessor’s office and they will set up a time for you to come in and chat with one of the people in their office. Be prepared to bring something more than your opinion to make your case! If you need some documentation of property values, I would be glad to provide you with recent sales in the area.
My personal experience was a bit opposite of the typical situation. We purchased a home at a price that was pretty low for the area. It was a government owned property, so would be considered “distressed,” but it was in good shape and didn’t really need any renovation. When the tax assessment came out, the property was valued much higher than what we paid. I took in our closing documents and pictures of the condition of the house to state my case. The person at the Assessor’s office worked with me and we came to an acceptable compromise.
As a homeowner in Tulsa County, you should also be aware that you can file for a Homestead Exemption on your primary residence. This saves you a little bit on your annual taxes and also prevents your home from being taken from you as part of a lawsuit. You have until March 15th to file your Homestead Exemption. You can find these forms online, or contact me and I will send you one. (If you are a client of mine who purchased a home recently, you should be receiving one from me in January anyway!) If you are unsure as to whether you ever filed for Homestead Exemption on your home, call me and I will look up the tax records for you to confirm.
If you are over 65 with a limited income, you may qualify for a Senior Freeze on your property. This doesn’t freeze you taxes but freezes the value of your home.
Don’t forget that you can claim your property taxes as a deduction on your federal income taxes too! Nobody likes taxes, but they are a fact of life. As Benjamin Franklin stated, “In this world, nothing can be said to be certain except death and taxes.” Taxes may be inevitable but I’m for doing everything we can to minimize them!