Henrico County released a statement today to educate residents regarding free property tax assessment appeals, because some homeowners have received a mailing from a private company that could mislead them into paying for information to appeal their real estate tax assessments.
The mailing, titled “2012 Property Tax Assessment Analysis,” claims the assessment of the homeowner’s property is too high and will result in an inflated property tax bill. The mailing suggests the homeowner could reduce the tax by appealing the assessment with the help of information purchased from the company for $99.
“Henrico homeowners can appeal their tax assessment free of charge,” said Thomas C. Little, real estate assessment director. “Homeowners can research the sales prices of comparable homes for free on the county website or they can simply call or email the Real Estate division. We will be glad to provide any information necessary.”
Homeowners are not required to complete paperwork to appeal an assessment, Little said, noting that a phone call or email is sufficient to initiate an appeal.
Real estate property information is available on the homepage of the county website, www.co.henrico.va.us, under “online services.” Information also is available by calling the Real Estate division at (804) 501-5346 or by sending an email to email@example.com.
The mailing has led a handful of residents to file their own appeals of their tax assessments, Little said.
“Our biggest concern is the fear factor,” he said. “We don’t want homeowners to be scared into paying for something that’s available to them for free.”