Wednesday, September 28, 2016

7 Fall Maintenance Tasks Every Homeowner Needs to Complete Now

Property Tax Reduction Consultants
125 Jericho Turnpike, Suite 500 
Jericho, NY 11753
(516) 484-0654 or (631) 484-0654

Fall Maintenance | Fall Maintenance Tips | P.T.R.C. Inc.
Fall is finally here, and while for many of you that means planning a weekend trip to the orchard/pumpkin patch or spending the night being spooked at a local haunted house, if you're a homeowner, time also must be made to address home maintenance tasks.

While the weather is still nice, here are seven tasks you need to check off your to-do list:

  1. Clean your gutters. Leaves in your gutters may not seem like such a bad thing now, but they can cause some serious damage once the weather gets colder - specifically, we're taking about the formation of ice dams.
  2. Change your air filters. Your heating system will work a lot better this fall if it's operating with a clean air filter. Before you crank up the thermostat for the season, be sure to clean or change the air filter in your heating system AND clean out the air filter that was used for the air conditioner this past summer.
  3. Seal cracks. Cracks around windows and doors will result in heat escaping from your home, so take some time to patch these up - some methods to try are re-caulking the cracks or add weatherstripping.
  4. Protect your pipes. Frozen pipes are a major headache, especially if/when they burst, but you can prevent this from happening by wrapping your exposed pipes now. Keeping them protected from the cold weather is a must!
  5. Check your smoke detector. And your carbon monoxide detector while you're at it, too. Especially since furnaces can produce the deadly carbon monoxide gas, you should feel confident that your detector will alert you in case of an emergency.
  6. Trim tree branches. Not only can low hanging branches scratch your roof, but if trees surrounding your house have weak branches, heavy snow could cause them to snap and further damage your home too. If you have trees that are too close for comfort, now is the time to clean them up!
  7. Inspect your roof. If your roof has any apparent damage, such as missing or loose shingles, you'll want to have it repaired before the cold weather sets in - after all, do you really want to worry about snow leaking into your home via the roof this winter?
And now we'll leave you with a bonus task. While this doesn't necessarily have to do with maintenance, it does have to do with your home, and that's file a tax grievance. Applications for a tax grievance are now available on our website, and we encourage all homeowners to file in an attempt to lower their property taxes!

For more information about filing a tax grievance, please visit www.ptrc.com or give us a call at (516)/(631) 484-0654.

Friday, September 23, 2016

How to Tell if It's Time to Sell Your Home

Property Tax Reduction Consultants
125 Jericho Turnpike, Suite 500 
Jericho, NY 11753
(516) 484-0654 or (631) 484-0654

P.T.R.C. Inc. | Property Tax Reduction Consultants | House for Sale
Some people will live in their home forever, and others will pack up and move more than once - which are you more likely to do? If you're considering selling your home - even if not in the immediate future - you'll want to make sure that when you do, the timing is exactly right. Here are a few ways to tell that it is:

You can afford it.
Even though you'll be getting money from the sale, keep in mind that there are expenses associated with selling a home - for example, you may have to pay real estate commission. There are also moving expenses too, not to mention, you have to pay back what you owe and then have enough money for a down payment on your new house. All that said, it's extremely important that you feel comfortable financially before putting up a for sale sign.

You have equity in your home.
You can determine your equity by subtracting your home loans from the value of your home. This is important to understand because it can determine whether the sale will help cover selling costs or if you'll have to pay out of pocket for some selling and/or moving expenses.

You know buyers are looking.
Having your home on the market for a long time isn't a bad thing, but it can certainly affect your own timeline for buying a new home. Knowing this, you'll want to feel confident that buyers are going to be house hunting when you officially put your home up for sale - consider the seasons with this one.

Your current home doesn't meet your needs.
This could go one of two ways - your home might be too small for your growing family, or, it may actually have more space than is necessary and require more maintenance than you're prepared to handle. Either way, if you feel that your home is no longer a perfect match to your lifestyle, it's probably time to move on.

If after considering all factors you determine that it is time to sell your home and you find a new home on Long Island, know that P.T.R.C. Inc. is here to help if you have questions or concerns about your new property taxes. We've been specializing in reducing Long Island property taxes since 1990 and would love to work with you next.

For more information, please visit www.ptrc.com or give us a call at (516)/(631) 484-0654.

Monday, September 19, 2016

Understanding the Fees Associated With a Tax Grievance

Property Tax Reduction Consultants
125 Jericho Turnpike, Suite 500 
Jericho, NY 11753
(516) 484-0654 or (631) 484-0654


P.T.R.C. Inc. | Property Tax Reduction Consultants | Tax Grievance Fees
If you feel as though you are paying too much in property taxes for your Long Island home, you're not alone. Both Nassau and Suffolk County homeowners have come to us for years to ask about their property taxes, and the good news is that there are ways to fight them - this, we refer to as filing a tax grievance.

Now, although the purpose of a tax grievance is to try and lower your taxes, you may be wondering about what fees are associated with the process of trying to achieve just that. When you work with P.T.R.C. Inc., we make it easy for you:

No reduction = no fee!

That's correct, you read right - we only charge a fee for successful cases. For those that do receive a reduction, our fee is 50% of the property tax reduction payable after official notification of the tax reduction. Some other fees to keep in mind are:
  • If a SCAR petition needs to be a filed, there may be a $30 court filing fee.
  • If you're in Suffolk County and you're eligible for a reduction, a $75 CMA fee applies unless you provide us with a recent certified appraisal.
Let's go back to the beginning for just a moment - you should also know that we do NOT charge a fee to be qualified.

If your request for a reduction ends up being denied, not only do we not charge a fee, but your property taxes will remain unchanged, so you won't have to worry about any added costs there either - there are no penalties! In fact, you can try to grieve your taxes again next year when this happens, and the same principal applies when you work with us - no reduction that time, no fee either.

Applications for tax grievances are now available on our website - the deadline for Nassau County homeowners to file is March 1, 2017, and the deadline for Suffolk County homeowners to file is May 16, 2017. If you're ready to get started, we encourage you to send in your application sooner rather than later, as the grievance process can take a long time. Specifically, it can take anywhere from 18-24 months in Nassau County, and in Suffolk County, it can take anywhere from 12-18 months. And remember - no reduction, no fee from P.T.R.C. Inc.

For more information, please give us a call at (516)/(631) 484-0654 or email us at info@ptrc.com.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Why Work With P.T.R.C. Inc. to File a Tax Grievance?

Property Tax Reduction Consultants
125 Jericho Turnpike, Suite 500 
Jericho, NY 11753
(516) 484-0654 or (631) 484-0654

Property Tax Grievance | Long Island Property Taxes | P.T.R.C. Inc.
Applications to file a tax grievance for the 2018/2019 tax year are now available for Long Island homeowners, and if you're thinking about filing, we encourage you to start the process sooner rather than later. Although the deadline is March 1, 2017 for Nassau County residents and May 16, 2017 for Suffolk County residents, there's no reason why you shouldn't send your application in to us today!

If you haven't worked with us before to file a tax grievance, or if this is your first time filing altogether, we know you may be wondering what sets us apart and why you should trust our team. Below, we'll tell you.

  • We have been working with Long Island homeowners just like you since 1990 - we have 27 years of experience!
  • We have successfully handled 230,000 assessment challenges and have secured millions of dollars in reductions and refunds for our clients.
  • We only charge a fee for successful cases, so if you do not receive a reduction, you will not be charged! More on our fees here.
  • After you submit your signed application, our team takes care of all of the next steps on your behalf.
  • Our service is personalized for each client, and we work hard to make sure that each of our clients receive the attention they deserve.
While we could keep going, we thought you'd like to hear from our clients themselves - here are some of our client testimonials:

"Good job! Thank you! You fought city hall and won...Bravo!" - Patricia

"Thank you for helping my family with this reduction. My wife and I have just retired and the savings came just in the nick of time." - Charles & Karen

"Thank you. Your work on our behalf is much appreciated. We will recommend you to our family and friends." - Evelyn M.

So, do you think you're ready to get started? To learn more about P.T.R.C. Inc. and how we can help, please visit www.ptrc.com or call (516)/(631) 484-0654; inquires can also be emailed to info@ptrc.com. 

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

What You Need to Know About Buying a Second Home

Property Tax Reduction Consultants
125 Jericho Turnpike, Suite 500 
Jericho, NY 11753
(516) 484-0654 or (631) 484-0654

P.T.R.C. Inc. | Property Tax Reduction Consultants | Second Homes
Whether it be a vacation home in a different state, a summer house on the beach, or maybe even a retirement home, buying a second home is something a lot of people consider when the budget and timing is right. However, just because you've bought a first home already and are familiar with the process, that doesn't necessarily mean you can jump right into it again and make quick decisions - this too requires time and research to ensure that you're making smart choices (after all, this house is another investment).

If a second home has been on your mind lately, here are 5 important things you must know:

1. Don't buy anything on impulse.
As much as you may have that gut feeling, don't sign on the dotted line for the first home you see. Even if that does become the home you end up buying, you should see a few different options before making a final decision to ensure that you're 110% satisfied with your purchase.

2. Understand your long term goals.
What's the reason behind purchasing a second home? Are you looking for something nearby to get away to for a few years? Or, are you looking for some place that you will eventually retire too? Having a clear understanding of why you're buying a second home and what you plan to do with it in the future will really help you as you evaluate different properties.

3. You'll need to get to know the area.
Particularly for those with a vacation home in mind, it's important that you get to know your destination from the point of view of someone who is a resident, rather than a tourist. Even if you vacation to this place frequently, you may have different thoughts about it when you learn what's it like to live there full time. 

4. Consider maintenance needs.
The amount of time you plan to spend in your second home will play a big role in how much maintenance you're willing to do on your own. For example, if you're only there for a few months out of the year, will you be willing to travel to the home at other times of the year to take care of maintenance tasks? Understanding this will help you determine what type of home you should be looking for - for example, single family vs. a condo.

5. Know where your income is coming from.
Will your every day salary or savings be able to cover your second mortgage, or do you have plans to rent out the home when you aren't there? If renting is something you're considering to cover the cost of your second home, you then need to understand what it means to be a landlord and become familiar with all of the responsibilities that comes along with it.

For those of you planning to buy a second home on Long Island, we at P.T.R.C. Inc. are here to help if you have concerns about your new property taxes. We have been specializing in reducing Long Island property taxes since 1990 and have secured millions of dollars in refunds and reductions for our clients!

To learn more about what we do and how we can help you next, please call (516) or (631) 484-0654 or email info@ptrc.com today.

Friday, September 9, 2016

How to Figure Out If You Should Refinance

Property Tax Reduction Consultants
125 Jericho Turnpike, Suite 500 
Jericho, NY 11753
(516) 484-0654 or (631) 484-0654

If you've heard that interest rates on home loans are still relatively low, you may be going back and forth with the idea of refinancing. However, although periods of low interest rates may indicate that it is, in fact, a good time to revisit your mortgage, making the decision to refinance involves a lot more than just understanding the change in interest. Keep reading for some additional factors that should go into your decision.

1. You are currently paying mortgage insurance.
Mortgage insurance is required when you do not put 20% down on your home at the time of purchase. Since you can stop paying mortgage insurance once you have this 20% equity in your home, now is a great time to see where you stand - if you qualify, you can start saving yourself hundreds of dollars per month. Realtor.com explains that now is a good time to look into this because home values are continuing to increase, and as they do, so does the equity in your home, which means you could have already reached that 20% requirement.

2. You have plans to stay in your home for a long time.
Refinancing isn't just a matter of updating paperwork - it also involves closing costs, thus requiring you to spend money. That said, you want to make sure that you're going to be in that house for a long enough period of time that the payoff is worth it. While there are some no-cost refinance options out there, the interest rates on these may be a little higher, so you'd really need to analyze how much you'd be saving in the long run depending on how long you plan to stay.

3. You want to pay your loan off faster.
If you want to pay your mortgage off faster and you can afford to increase your monthly payments, then refinancing could be a great option. Though it may seem like you're spending more at first, in the long run you could save yourself a ton of money where interest is concerned.

If you're thinking about refinancing, the most important thing is to make sure that it makes sense for you - whatever the current interest rates are, you must feel confident that your personal circumstances will be benefited in one way or another by moving forward with the process!

P.T.R.C. Inc. has been specializing in reducing Long Island property taxes since 1990. For information about how to file a tax grievance, please call (516) or (631) 484-0654 or email info@ptrc.com.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

We Are Now Accepting Nassau County Applications!

Property Tax Reduction Consultants
125 Jericho Turnpike, Suite 500 
Jericho, NY 11753
(516) 484-0654 or (631) 484-0654

P.T.R.C. Inc. | Nassau County Property Tax | Nassau County Tax Grievance

Nassau County homeowners - how do you feel about your property taxes? Would you say that you're paying more than you think you should be? If so, you've come to the right place!

The team here at P.T.R.C. Inc. has been specializing in reducing Long Island property taxes since 1990, and we are NOW accepting applications for the 2018/19 tax year for those of you who would like to file a property tax grievance. Applications for Nassau County tax grievances can be found on our website, and the deadline to file is March 1, 2017 - applications were also sent out in the mail, so be sure to keep an eye on your mailbox for a hard copy!

So how does it work?

Once you submit your signed application to us, we'll send you a confirmation that we received it within the deadline and will then take care of the grievance process on your behalf - starting by representing you before the Assessment Review Commission (ARC) in Nassau County. Depending on their decision, we'll either accept the reduction or proceed to Small Claims Assessment Review (SCAR) to take your case further. Should we need to pursue SCAR for your case, the good news for you is that we have proven to be very successful at this step! Learn more about the tax grievance process here.

Have more questions about tax grievances and working with us to file for one? To speak with one of our experts, please call (516) 484-0654 or email info@ptrc.com. And remember, the deadline for Nassau County is March 1, 2017, so although that seems far away, don't delay and get your application in today!

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Tax Grievance Applications Are Available Now!

Property Tax Reduction Consultants
125 Jericho Turnpike, Suite 500 
Jericho, NY 11753
(516) 484-0654 or (631) 484-0654

P.T.R.C. Inc. | Property Tax Reduction Consultants | Nassau County Tax Grievance
Happy September homeowners! We are excited to announce that the applications for a tax grievance are now available on our website - Nassau County homeowners can begin filing today! These applications are for the 2018/19 tax year and can be found here, or keep an eye on your mailbox where you should receive a hard copy soon!

If you plan to file a tax grievance, here are a few important notes we think you should know:
  • The deadline for Nassau County homeowners is March 1, 2017.
  • The deadline for Suffolk County homeowners is May 16, 2017. (Suffolk County homeowners - sit tight. We'll have more information about filing for you later this year)
  • The owner, other applicant-taxpayer, or a representative who has the applicant's written authorization are permitted to sign an application form.
  • If your request is turned down this year, your property taxes will remain unchanged and you can file again next year.
  • Should you be eligible for a property tax reduction, our fee is a percentage of the first year of savings. However, if there is no reduction, we do not charge a fee! For more details about fees associated with tax grievances, send us an email or give us a call to speak with an expert.
Last but not least, keep in mind that the grievance process can be timely - from beginning to end, it could take as long as 18 months. But, regardless of when your case is settled, the results will be retroactive to the beginning of the tax year that your property tax grievance was filed for.

Still have questions about the tax grievance process and how we can help? To learn more, please call (516) or (631) 484-0654 or email info@ptrc.com. Otherwise, if you're ready to file, just visit www.ptrc.com, click on "applications" and select your preferred method of applying - sign online, via a PDF document, or via a Word document. Or, as we mentioned earlier, be on the lookout for an application in the mail!