Thursday, January 30, 2020

Ways to Show Your Home Some Love


With Valentine’s Day coming up, you will want to focus on love. Most importantly, you may want to send your loved ones a sweet card or pick up a box of their favorite chocolates. As you may be looking for ways to show love for your loved ones, you may also want to show the things you appreciate the most some TLC — like your home.

Here are some ways you can show your home some love this Valentine’s Day:

  • Fill it with flowers. Everyone loves getting flowers on Valentine’s Day — even your home! The atmosphere in your home will be fresher and you’ll get to enjoy the look of fresh flowers in your living space, too. 
  • Buy some new decor. Not only will your home feel new and bright, but you will also enjoy the luxurious feel that it brings to a room you felt needed some work
  • Get a head start on home projects. Whether it is a broken table leg or a hole in the wall, taking out the extra time to show your home some love and fix it will be the perfect way to show your house some appreciation this Valentine's Day. 


Here at P.T.R.C., Inc., we are determined to help our clients pay the lowest amount of property tax as required by law. Contact us today to see how we can help you: info@ptrc.com

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

What to Expect at a Property Tax Hearing

Fighting Your Property Taxes

If you are attending a property tax hearing, there are some things that you should be prepared for beforehand to ensure the best possible outcome for your case. Read on to learn more.

If you do not agree with the amount of taxes that you are said to owe for the 2020/2021 tax year, you need to file an appeal and get a confirmation from our experts at P.T.R.C., Inc. stating that you are eligible to appeal this process. We must get this information by the deadline or it will not count.

Filing time is once a year, don’t miss the deadlines! Applications must be received in our office by 2pm:

Nassau                 2021/22                 March 2nd, 2020 

Suffolk                 2020/21                 May 19th,  2020   

Preparing for a Property Tax Grievance Hearing

Before going to this hearing, you need to review the appraisers’ information on the home by reviewing the condition, utility, and desirability. If it is sound that the appraisal was not accurate, then it will often be corrected if this information can be validated.

The condition of the home will have a direct impact on the property tax. If there is rotten wood, paint peeling, problems with the foundation, or leaks in the roof a person needs to obtain an estimate for the repairs. They may be able to get their tax reduced based on this information.

Before entering the hearing all of the documents should be in place and any relevant information about the home should be documented and brought to the heating. A person should have their original appraisal and the revised version they feel is correct. Three new analyses of the home will need to be performed and have similar results for the organization to reduce the amount of taxes on the home. All of this information must be presented to them in writing.

As a homeowner, you are entitled to file a property tax grievance. If you are interested in learning more about the process or are interested in starting your tax reduction, contact our experts at P.T.R.C. today. Nassau: (516) 484-0654, Suffolk: (631) 484-0654

Thursday, January 23, 2020

What You Need to Know About STAR Changes

New York State has recently made quite a few changes to the School Tax Assessment Relief program. These changes may affect those who have recently purchased homes and have successfully paid taxes for the 2019-20 school year. If you fall into this category, you are not currently registered to receive STAR exemption or credits. Read on to learn more. 

Changes to Basic STAR and Enhanced STAR

If you have registered for Basic STAR, you will automatically be upgraded to Enhanced STAR following verification by the State of New York. You will need to verify:
  • Your identity
  • Your age
  • Your income


This eliminates the need to manually apply through the Nassau County Department of Assesment.

Persons who have not filed tax returns and are currently registered in the STAR program, the state of New York will send an income worksheet to be completed to assess and substantiate your household income to be eligible for Basic or Enhanced STAR.

While those homeowners that currently receive the Basic STAR exemption, that is interested in maintaining their credit status, must still apply for Enhanced STAR if they believe they qualify for the program.

Homeowners with an annual income between $250,000 and $500,000 will receive have the ability to stay exempt on property bills and they will receive a check from the State of New York. While there are no specific deadlines for registering with the STAR program, you should treat every update as a time-sensitive matter. Please check the website to see when you should be expecting your check if you qualify.

Here at P.T.R.C., Inc., we are determined to help our clients pay the lowest amount of property tax as required by law. Contact us today to see how we can help you: info@ptrc.com

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Tax Strategies for the New Year

While you may not have the total amount your household will spend on taxes, you can prepare for them throughout the entire year. There are strategies that can save thousands of dollars and your time by preparing for your taxes year-round. These tips can work for both state and federal taxes.

Records Organization

Gather your previous year’s tax return, 1099s and W-2s for the current year, receipts, and anything else you need for tax time. This will save you the time of locating all of these documents. Using a checklist will help you to keep track of the items that you need to prepare your taxes. Take the time to find the correct forms to file your taxes.

Retirement Accounts

Fund your retirement account ahead of the tax filing deadline for traditional IRAs and Roth IRAs.

Estimated Tax Payment

Making an estimated payment by the 15th of January can help you to eliminate penalties from the fourth quarter. You will owe a penalty for other quarters if you have not sent estimated payments for them at the time.

Itemize Deductions

The standard deduction is easier to take but it is possible to save more money by itemizing your expenses if you own your home, have a high tax rate, or are self-employed. Charitable donations and mortgage interest are well-known deductions. Portions of medical expenses over 10 percent of adjusted gross income can also be deducted.

Home Office Deduction

Make sure to examine the home office deduction closely. The rules for eligibility have changed, so be sure to run through the necessary qualifications closely.

File on Time and Electronically

It is imperative that you file your taxes and pay any taxes owed on time in order to prevent penalization. Filing electronically can save you on processing time as well as getting any refunds issued up to a month earlier.

Monday, January 6, 2020

Home Renovation Trends for 2020

Home renovation is very cyclical and reactive, just like many other aspects of life. The home improvement projects that are in effect in 2020 will not be the same ones that are present from five years ago. Here are some of the biggest home improvement trends for 2020.

More Money for Projects

Our economy has been on a tear for several years and the economy is reaching full employment which is translating into larger home improvement projects. Further, loans with low-interest rates are more accessible than ever before and this is resulting in large scale projects, particularly in suburbs such as kitchen renovations, floor additions, and redone outdoor spaces.

Smart Homes

The internet is beginning to realize its smart home potential and more homes are being renovated with smart devices in mind. Smart devices are entering into our kitchens and appliances with smartphone-controlled timers, our heating and cooling systems with remote smart devices that let you optimize your heating and cooling, and smart security systems that allow for access away from home. More than minor tools, these smart home devices are being fully integrated and allow for remote and voice accessed tools that make the future fully accessible today.

Clean Air and Focus On the Environment

Home improvement looks to improve on the spaces in your home with advanced air and water purification kits, green recycling options, and integrated home efficiencies. Homeowners are increasingly concerned with these items and are great selling points for those who are looking to live cleaner.

Monday, December 30, 2019

Why Lowering Your Property Taxes is an Achievable New Year’s Resolution

Reduce Your Property Taxes in 2020

The new year is right around the corner, and for many, this is the time of year to set goals and intentions for the next 365 days. Many homeowners on Long Island strive to save more money — whether that’s by minimizing utility bills or making a ‘rainy day fund’. However, one major saving is easily achievable — reducing your property tax bill.

Tax appeal season in Nassau and Suffolk county is near the beginning of the year (Nassau: March 2nd, 2020 and Suffolk: May 19th, 2020), making it the perfect opportunity to check this off your 2020 resolution list.

During January, every homeowner should receive their annual assessment (determining the value of your home for the purpose of taxation).  You can use this assessment to decide if you wish to file for a property tax reduction.

Your property’s assessment is one of the factors used by your local governments and school district to determine the amount of your property taxes. A property’s assessment is based on its market value. Market value is how much a property would sell for under normal conditions.

Property Tax Grievances With PTRC

Many homeowners assume that their taxes have simply risen, and prepare to pay more in taxes. What you may not realize, however, is that you can appeal your assessment based on the actual valuation of your property.

A property tax grievance is a formal complaint against the assessed value of your property. There are two levels of formal review:


  • Administrative review (BAR or ARC) – The grievance process is conducted at the municipal level.
  • Judicial review (SCAR) – In order to pursue judicial review (SCAR) you must first go through administrative review. The state currently imposes a $30.00 filing fee for each case.


As a homeowner, you are entitled to file a property tax grievance. If you are interested in learning more about the process or are interested in starting your tax reduction, contact our experts at P.T.R.C. today. Nassau: (516) 484-0654, Suffolk: (631) 484-0654

Tuesday, December 17, 2019

Ways to Save Energy This Winter


Winter is here — which means more money spent on heating and other utility costs around your home. When it comes to energy, these small changes can add up to big savings on your winter energy bills.

Kitchen and Laundry Savings

From cooking to washing, your kitchen and laundry room are two of the rooms that use the most water and energy in the home. Reduce your costs by:

  • Using pots and pans that are the same size as your stove’s burners.
  • Cook food in your microwave rather than your oven to save up to 80% energy.
  • Seal your fridge and freezer tight to prevent letting cool air escape.
  • Reserve hot water for heavily soiled loads of laundry — most detergents are formulated to work just as well in cold water.
  • Clean out the lint from your dryer’s filter.
  • Run your washer and dryer only when you have a full load.

Lighting Savings

PSEG notes that lighting accounts for about 12% of your home's electric use. By making these small changes, you can make a big impact on your electric bill.

  • Utilize LED lights instead of incandescent bulbs.
  • Turning off all lights at night — search for any glowing battery lights, too!
  • Look for the ENERGY-STAR® label when purchasing lighting products. 

Electronic Savings

According to PSEG, in the average home, 75% of the electricity used to power home electronics is consumed while the products are turned off. Devices that come on instantly after touching it draws power at all times. Cut back on your electric bill this winter by:

  • Unplug charging chords and holiday lights to avoid fires and lower your costs.
  • Switch the TV off when no one is watching.
  • Purchase an inkjet printer in place of laser printers, as they are 90% more efficient.

Heating Savings

All heating systems need electricity to function, regardless of the style. Proper settings and an efficient system are key to lowering your costs. Be sure to perform the following checks to ensure you’re not letting your warm air cause your bill to skyrocket.


  • Seal all windows and door leaks to prevent warm air from escaping.
  • Check your air filters and replace them if necessary.
  • Have your system maintained to identify any possible issues.
  • Utilize a programmable thermostat to adjust your home’s temperature to your lifestyle.


Here at P.T.R.C., Inc., we are determined to help our clients pay the lowest amount of property tax as required by law. Contact us today to see how we can help you: info@ptrc.com