Businesses and individuals owning real estate in Indiana valued at $1,000,000 or more for tax purposes should act now to reduce their Indiana real estate tax bill. Long-term lessees obligated to pay property taxes should also take action.

It’s Now or Never! File your Notice to Initiate Appeal (Form 130) with the local assessing official for the county in which your property is located before the annual appeal deadline on June 15, 2021. For most of Indiana, the Form 130 must be filed with the County Assessor. However, if your property is located within the jurisdiction of one of 13 remaining Township Assessors in Indiana, then your Form 130 must be filed with the Township Assessor. Although, in Indiana, the property tax bills for the 2021 assessment of real property are not due until 2022, the time to dispute “overvaluations” of real estate is now. If a Form 130 is not filed by June 15, 2021, the right to appeal is lost for this year, except in very limited circumstances. 

More Properties Are Being Reassessed in 2021! In 2020, many Assessors were delayed in reassessing properties; so, they are reassessing many more properties in 2021. That property could be yours!

But, I Didn’t Get a Notice?! In 2020, many Assessors were delayed in reassessing properties; so, they are reassessing many more properties in 2021. That property could be yours!

Income Producing Properties Present Reduction Opportunities! The tax assessment value of many leased commercial properties are affected by the potential to produce income, like hotels, office buildings, retail centers, apartments, etc. The challenges of 2020 may provide an opportunity to reduce the property tax assessment value of your real property. Note that many tenants of such properties often have the ability to appeal the tax assessment themselves under the terms of their lease agreements, so lessees of commercial property should investigate this tax savings opportunity as well.

Is It Worth It? The savings can really add up. For example, in Marion County (Metro Indianapolis), a reduction of $100,000 in value will typically result in an annual decrease in real property tax of approximately $3,000, and a reduction of $1,000,000 in value will result in an annual tax decrease of $30,000. The results can be similar in other Indiana Counties. This can add up over multiple years.

Can I Do It Myself? Although many choose to represent themselves in disputing “overvaluations” with the Assessor, many pitfalls and traps exist for those unfamiliar with the process. A conference with the Assessor is just the first step in a multi-step process, and failure to request or to go through any given step may preclude an appeal to the next required step, such as an appeal to the County Property Tax Assessment Board of Appeals or to the Indiana Board of Tax Review. Another consideration is getting off on the right foot, and experience helps. It is generally more prudent to involve an attorney on the front end, who knows the process and property tax law. 

Don’t wait, June 15, 2021 will be here before you know it.