How and When Can You Appeal Property Taxes in Routt County / Steamboat Springs, CO?
How much do you want to pay in Property Taxes?
It's the time of the year that everyone is thinking about their property taxes because we now all have our tax bills for 2012 property taxes that are payable in 2013. In Routt County we are fortunate to have very low property tax rates compared to most areas due to voters that are conservative in approving new taxes, state Tabor limits in property tax growth, a signifcant portion of local property owners that have second homes thus don't send their kids to school here along with a few very large property owners like mines & a power plant that make up a significant portion of our tax base . That said we all want to pay our taxes on the correct valuation and not overpay due to an error in that process.
The county has a pretty tough job to revalue each and every property every two years. They work very hard to do this but often don't know some of the factors that influence the value of a particular property or the comps they have chosen to value it with. The valuations are also done every two years based on values on June 30th so the values are up to two years old creating an opportunity for them to look wrong if the market has moved since the last valuation.
It is too late to appeal last year's taxes for the tax bills you are preparing to pay now, the protest period was May 1, 2012 - June 1, 2012. The next protest period is May 1, 2013 - June 1, 2013, with any adjustments taking place by the end of June and the final certification in November.
Let me know if you have any questions or would like to know approximately what your home was worth at the last valuation date on June 30, 2012. I can provide you with a quick look or the comps you need to see if things are in the range or it is worth looking closer at an appeal. Close enough is most often the case given how low our property taxes rates are for residential property. Commerical is a whole different deal tax rate and valuation process wise that we can talk about if you would like.
Here is an outline of the appeal process:
1) To preserve your right to appeal, your protest must be postmarked, e-mailed, faxed or delivered in person on or before June 1, 2013, to the Routt County assessor’s office
• The Assessor is required by law to hear all objections by June 1.
• The Assessor must render the decision in writing by June 30. This decision is reported on a Notice of Determination (NOD).
• Any appeals made outside the official protest period must be done through the Abatement process.
2) If you disagree with the Assessor’s determination:
• You can appeal to the County Board of Equalization (County Commissioners) by July 16th.
• The County Board of Equalization will conduct hearings during July and August.
• The County Board must notify you in writing of its decision no later than August 10.
3) If you disagree with the County Board of Equalization’s decision:
You can appeal to the State Board of Assessment Appeals, District Court or you may choose to have your appeal arbitrated. However, you must file your appeal within 30 days of the County Board of Equalization’s decision.
4) If you are dissatisfied with the State Board of Assessment Appeals’ decision:
You can appeal to the Court of Appeals.