How to Dispute a Property Assessment in the State of New York

If you own property in New York State you may want to take note of an approaching day.  The Fourth Tuesday in May is Property Assessment Grievance Day in New York (some municipalities may choose to schedule it on a different day but it is always in May).  This year Grievance Day in the Towns of Webb, Forestport and Inlet falls on the 27th.  The Town of Webb requests that you have your documents submitted by May 19th this year.  The Town of Inlet would like you to schedule an informal meeting ahead of time.  Please keep in mind that your Assessor does not have any control over how much you pay in Taxes, they only have a say in the value assigned to your property.  Generally, if your full market value assessment reflects roughly the amount for which you could sell your property, then your assessment is relatively fair.

The process of challenging your assessment is the same throughout the state of New York, details can be found on the New York State Department Tax and Finance website (click here).  The same form is used in every municipality.  The form, RP–524, can be found by clicking here.  In addition to RP-524, you will need to have your own estimate of the market value of your property and supporting documentation.  There are four arguments you can use to dispute the assessed value of your property:

  1. UNEQUAL ASSESSMENT (in comparison to other similar properties)
  2. EXCESSIVE ASSESSMENT (The market value assigned to your property is  higher than what you could sell your home for in the current market)
  3. UNLAWFUL ASSESSMENT
  4. MISCLASSIFICATION

I imagine that most property owners that file a grievance do so under the claim of an Excessive Assessment.   If you recently purchased a property or if you are purchasing a property (for the less than the assessed value of the property) your contract is all the supporting documentation you need.  If you currently have your property listed with an agent (for less than your assessed market value) then your listing agreement will serve as the supporting documentation.  If you have recently had your property appraised, your appraisal can also serve as supporting documentation.

In most municipalities you can fax or mail your documents to the assessor.  I strongly advise you to confirm receipt of all of your documents several business days before the 27th.  If you have questions please call your assessor.

Town of Forestport Assessor      Phone 315-392-5547      Fax 315-392-4607

Town Of Webb Assessor            Phone 315-369-6880      Fax 315-369-3021

Town of Inlet Assessor               Phone 315-357-5726      Fax 315-357-3570