To qualify, the homestead property must have been uninhabitable for at least 30 days and affected owners must file a sworn application for Abatement of Taxes for Homestead Residential Improvements (DR-463) along with supporting documentation to the Property Appraiser. If approved, the Property Appraiser will issue an official written statement to the Tax Collector, who will calculate and issue the credit.
In most instances, an appraiser will spend their time determining the value of one piece of property at a time. Building up their expertise in making their assessments often leads appraisers to specialize in a particular area of real estate. For example, a commercial appraiser could focus on the market for office buildings, hotels, retail locations, and other properties that include an income generating quality.
Real estate appraisal in Germany is partly codified by law. The federal Baugesetzbuch (abbr. BauGB, "German statutory code on building and construction'") contains guidelines on governing authorities, defines the term market value and refers to continuative rules (chapter 3, articles 192 ff.). Each municipality (city or administrative district) must form a Gutachterausschuss (appraisal committee), consisting of a chairman and honorary members. The committee gathers information on all real estate deals (it is mandatory to send a copy of each notarial purchase contract to the Gutachterausschuss) and includes it in the Kaufpreissammlung (purchase price database). Most committees publish an official real estate market report every two years, in which besides other information on comparables the land value is determined. The committees also perform appraisals on behalf of public authorities.
As always, the Property Appraiser's office is ready to answer any of your value or exemption questions. Please remember that our office does not set the millage rates, adopt budgets or collect taxes. If your questions concern any of those issues, please contact the taxing authority listed in the notice. Their meeting dates, locations and times are printed on the back side of the form.