How Much Over the Property Tax Value Can I Set My Asking Price to Sell My Home?

by James Rada, Jr. ; Updated July 27, 2017
Set your house selling price close the fair market value of the house.

Selling your home is a big financial decision. The hope is that you’ll make a profit so that you can roll your capital gains into a new home. Priced right a home will sell quickly at a profit. However, if you price your home too high, it will sit on the market unsold while you continue to make mortgage payments on it. If you’ve already moved into a new home, this means you’ll be making double payments until the house sells. It also indicates to buyers that the home might be overpriced so they’ll be less willing to pay your asking price, according to FrontDoor.com

Property Tax Value

The value that your local taxing authority uses to calculate the property taxes on your home is known as the assessment value. It is supposed to be a reflection of the fair market value of your home. Over time, unless the property is reassessed, a large difference can grow between the assessed value and the market value. This is particularly the case in a rapidly rising or rapidly declining market that outpaces any annual changes in your assessment.

Partial Assessments

Some jurisdictions base their property tax value on a percentage of your assessment. If this is the case where you live, your property tax value will be far below the actual value of your house. For instance, until 2010, Adams County, Pennsylvania, based its property tax value at 50 percent of the assessment. Therefore, the property tax value of a home worth $300,000 would be only $150,000.

Setting Your Selling Price

There’s no limit for how much over your assessment value you can set your selling price. If someone is willing to pay an inflated price for your home, then it means that you will have a greater profit. However, you home will sell easier if it priced near the assessed value. This is assuming that your assessed value is an accurate reflection of the current market in your neighborhood.

Fair Market Value

The selling price you should choose for your home should be close to the fair market value of your home. This is generally determined by looking at comparable homes that have sold recently in your neighborhood. The more similar a home is to your and the more recent it sold, the more accurate your comparable will be. Comparable homes are ones that are close in lot size, house size, age, condition and number of rooms. Your real estate agent can find the comparable homes in your neighborhood. You still may need to tweak the prices up or down to take into account other differences in how the properties compare to yours, according to FrontDoor.com.

About the Author

James Rada, Jr. was a newspaper reporter for eight years and earned 23 awards from the Maryland Delaware D.C. Press Association, Associated Press, Society of Professional Journalists, Maryland State Teachers’ Association and CNHI. He also worked for 12 years as a marketing communications writer, earning a Print Copywriter of the Year Award from the Utah Ad Federation. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in communications.

Photo Credits

  • House for sale image by Heng kong Chen from Fotolia.com