If your house has declined in value in recent years, you might be able to save some money in 2012 by contesting your property tax assessment.
Ken Pozek, a Realtor with Keller Williams Realty in Novi, Mich., sends an annual letter to his clients to remind them to review their property tax and request a hearing date within the required time if the assessed value is excessive. He'll also help out, as many real estate agents will, with comparable sales data for an appeal.
The savings, he says, can be substantial.
"Our property values have dropped 40 percent," Pozek says, "so technically, their taxes should drop 40 percent. On average, I can save somebody about $1,500 a year."
"Most property tax assessors' websites have useful information for homeowners about assessment dates and appeals.