3 things to do when you receive your property tax assessment

July 10, 2018|Sarah Evans

Check your property tax assessment and carefully compare it to your filed forms, paying particular attention when the assessed value has changed or is different than expected. If you have concerns with how your property was assessed, there are steps you can take to understand why changes were made.

It is property tax assessment season. Most local jurisdictions have mailed the 2018 assessments to taxpayers and the Wisconsin Department of Revenue just mailed the manufacturing assessments in mid-June. Even if there is no change to the assessment from the prior year, expect to receive a notice.

Here are a few quick things you can do to review your assessments:

  1. Compare your personal property assessment to the return as filed. Your personal property assessment determination is based on the values you reported on your Manufacturing Personal Property Assessment Form M-P filed with the state of Wisconsin or your Form PA-003 Statement of Personal Property filed with the local assessor. You should compare the form as filed and the values reported with the actual assessment. Evaluate any significant differences to ensure they are correct.
  2. Review the real estate assessment notice. Was there a significant increase in your real estate assessment? Does this make sense in light of changes in your business during 2017? If you had new construction or significant remodeling you will likely see an increase. However, sometimes an increase is due to general revaluation of an entire district or jurisdiction due to market changes. If you feel your assessment does not accurately reflect the market value of the property, move on to step 3.
  3. Set up an open book meeting or call the assessor to learn more. The assessment notice will include information regarding next steps. If the parcel is locally assessed, read the notice thoroughly and look for “open book” and “Board of Review” dates. Call the assessor or have a Schenck property tax specialist call on your behalf to schedule a meeting to discuss what the numbers mean and gain an understanding of how your property has been assessed. For manufacturing assessments the deadline for filing an objection and appealing your assessment notice is August 10.

    If the parcel is classified as manufacturing and you have questions or concerns, contact us. Schenck works closely with the assessors and can contact the district office responsible for the assessment of your location and attempt to resolve any issues informally without filing a formal appeal.

As a reminder, effective with personal property tax assessments starting in January 1, 2018, many businesses are eligible to receive a new exemption for machinery, tools and patterns. Read our recent article, “Check your personal property tax assessment for new machinery and equipment exemption,” to learn more.

If you have specific questions, please reach out to Sarah Evans, State and Local Tax manager, at sarah.evans@schencksc.com or any member of the State and Local Tax Team at 800-236-2246.


Sarah Evans, CPA, has more than 25 years of state and local tax experience. Her experience includes coordination of sales tax audits and reverse audits as well as research, planning and compliance related to sales and use, property, income and franchise taxes.



Tags: Property Tax