The typical tax cycle can be daunting: filing returns for your business personal property (BPP), keeping up with notices of assessment for BPP and real estate, handling valuation appeals, and paying tax bills. You can easily have 1,500 returns; 90 notices; and 50 bills due next month. It’s enough to keep you and your tax team working overtime, especially if your strategy is reactive, so that you’re only taking action after you receive tax documents in the mail.
To take control of the tax cycle, you need to be proactive. There are a number of benefits you can take advantage of with property tax tracking.
5 Key Benefits Of Proactive Property Tax Tracking
1. Avoid penalties.
There are two areas of the tax cycle where you could face penalties if you’re not careful: filing returns and paying bills. If you file a return late, the assessor can penalize you by either adding a fixed dollar amount or increasing your tax liability by a certain percentage—sometimes 10% of the total bill or greater. The same is true for paying a tax bill late. Staying on top of your return and bill due dates can help you address these tasks on time, thus avoiding any penalty. But if your team can’t seem to get ahead on their own, you can always turn to property tax tracking services or software.
2. Stay on top of every tax bill.
When you’re dealing with different jurisdictions, you’re bound to receive tax bills from numerous entities. However, which entities the bills come from varies across locales. For example, some jurisdictions send a single tax bill, while others require you to pay three or four different tax bills. Proactive proper property tax tracking ensures your team is aware of all tax bills coming your way, regardless of the jurisdiction.
3. Appeal more valuations.
Appeal due dates can come and go when your team is overburdened by other tax concerns. Since appeals aren’t required, they’re typically the first task to slip through the cracks during busy times. However, appeals represent great opportunities to save money.
If you’ve received an inaccurate valuation from an assessor—say $1 million instead of $500,000—you could be on the line for a much larger tax liability than warranted. But your team has to stay ahead of appeal due dates to act in time; otherwise, you must abide by the assessor’s value (even if you realize later that it’s wrong).
4. Spend more time on tax strategy.
Property tax tracking enables your team to reclaim time that’s typically lost in tracking forgotten due dates and late bills, and figuring out why they were late in the first place. Instead, you can focus on the bigger picture—your tax strategy. You can identify areas of savings and ways to reduce your tax liability.
5. Increase the accuracy of your returns.
When you have hundreds of returns in the queue and looming deadlines, the last thing you have time for is double-checking the return in front of you. If you’re consistent with your property tax tracking, you’ll find that you can spend more time and attention on each return, thereby increasing the accuracy of both the return and the resulting valuation assessment.
Interested in seeing a demo of TotalPropertyTax tracking and automation software so you can be proactive with your property taxes? Set up a time today!