We file assessed valuation appeals on behalf of residential, commercial, industrial and multi-family property owners. Our office takes a very proactive approach by first researching and analyzing a property’s specific assessment history. We then determine what type of appeals theory is best suited to an appeal for a specific property. For example, in a commercial or multi-family property appeal either the income approach or comparable sales approach might be the most advantageous theory. Where necessary, we will recommend the services of an appraiser highly experienced in preparing real estate tax appraisals. A good appraisal often can make the difference between a successful or unsuccessful appeal. Our long held philosophy is that there is absolutely no value in filing an appeal merely for the sake of filing one.
We advise our clients to have their real estate tax situation reviewed annually by our office. One reason is because some counties (i.e. Lake County) reassess all properties on an annual basis. In Cook County specific areas of the county are reassessed every 3 years—what is known as the Triennial Reassessment process. Taxpayers are not limited to appealing their assessed valuations during just the 1st year of the Triennial. Instead, they can appeal every single year during the entire duration of the Triennial. Further, various properties may be subject to major changes from one year to the next. For example, during the recent severe real estate downturn, several commercial properties suddenly experienced severe vacancy problems. As a result, property tax review boards in many counties were quite willing to reduce assessed valuations based on evidence showing existing vacancies. These factors point up the value of annual assessment reviews.
We inform clients of their eligibility for specific tax exemptions and incentives, including: (1) the Senior Citizen’s Assessment Freeze Exemption; (2) the Disabled Persons Exemption; (3) the Returning Veterans Exemption; and (4) the Cook County Emergency Sustainable Relief (SER) Program. These tax exemptions and incentives can add up to thousands of dollars in tax savings for eligible taxpayers. However, it is surprising how many taxpayers are not aware of these particular exemptions and incentives. Again, our office attempts to proactively advise clients regarding their rights to particular exemptions and incentives.
We represent condominium and homeowners association boards of directors regarding various issues, including: (1) association assessed valuation appeals; (2) collection of delinquent assessments, including the litigation of forcible entry and detainer suits; (3) drafting declaration and bylaw amendments; (4) preparing, reviewing and negotiating contracts and other agreements between an association and another party; (5) preparation of opinion letters dealing with condominium and homeowners association issues; and (6) interpretation of legislation pertaining to associations.
We represent clients in the purchase and sale of commercial and residential properties. Our representation includes the drafting, review and negotiation of all contracts, agreements and related documents. Further, we attend all closings of these transactions and the performance of all post-closing work. Mr.Linn is a title agent for Fidelity National Title.
We represent clients seeking special use permits and zoning modifications. Our representation includes: (1) meeting with zoning board staff members for purposes of preparing and submitting all required documentation; (2) attendance at zoning board hearings and presentation of oral arguments at these hearings in support of our client’s position; and (3) the preparation, review and negotiation of easement and license agreements between our clients and municipal government bodies.