leftProperty Tax Assessment Appeal Services

In Vermont your property tax burden is based on an assessment of your property's value. By law, your assessment should be the fair market value of the real property in it's highest and best use as of April 1st each tax year.  But sometimes it may seem as though your assessment is too high.  Especially after a town-wide reassessment.  

Often, these matters can be resolved by reviewing the property data on your lister's card and scheduling a short meeting with the assessor. However, if after discussing your assessment you still feel as though your property was overvalued, a professional, independent, third-party appraisal is often your best bet in proving your case. That's where Sargeant Appraisal Service comes in.


Vermont has a three step process to appeal your property tax assessment.  The Secretary of State has published a handbook on the process, found on the web at www.sec.state.vt.us/municipal/pubs/taxappeals.html


In short, the steps are:

1. Appeal to the Assessor

2. Appeal to the Board of Civil Authority (Selectboard, Assessor and Town Clerk)

3. Appeal to the State Appraisal Board or in Superior Court     


It makes sense to do your own research before determining whether to go forward with a property assessment appeal, especially before you make the decision to hire a professional appraiser.  Our final opinion of market value will be based on the most recent, and similar, sales and listing data.  It may, or may not, support your position.  As such, in order to maintain absolute independence throughout the process, we insist on receiving our appraisal fee at the time we inspect your property, before we begin any valuation analysis.  This way, no one can claim we arrived at a certain value so you could continue your appeal and we could collect our fee. 


When we perform an appraisal we do not become an advocate for your position.  If you hire us for an assessment appeal, you're commissioning  an independent, third-party, professional appraisal report. As such we do our own evaluation, beginning to end. If you're right that your property has been overvalued, our report will be more persuasive than any other evidence you can marshal on your own. 


Our appraisal fee for most single-family properties is $400. You will receive a 25-30 page report supporting our opinion of the market value of your property based on the most recent and similar data available.

In appeal steps 2 and 3 above, you will have a hearing and will need the appraiser you've hired to testify on their value conclusion. At Sargeant Appraisal Service we only have SRA designated appraisers able to professionally testify and support their conclusion at any appeal or court hearings.  Testimony is quoted at $150/hour, door to door, plus any travel expenses.


If you have any questions on the process please contact us at 775-5916.  In addition, at this time, we are not taking any tax assessment appeal cases in Rutland City.  If you do have a specific need for an appeal in Rutland City please contact us for a list of appraisers we would recommend.