Frequently Asked Questions

Property Taxes are taxes levied on real estate (land and buildings) by County and municipal taxing bodies.
These taxes pay for schools, libraries, police and fire departments, parks and forest preserves, snowplowing, social services, etc.

Property taxes are based upon the value of the property.  In Cook County, property taxes are computed this way: Assessed Value x Equalization Factor x Tax Rate = Property Taxes.  The “Equalization Factor” is determined by the State of Illinois.  The Tax Rate varies by township and neighborhood.

The assessor is a County official, whose job is to determine the “Assessed Value” of each property.

This is the value that the Assessor places on a property.  This value is a component of the calculation of your property tax amount.

Cook County reassesses all properties every three years.  This is known as the “Triennial Reassessment”.

A process where a property owner (or a Lessee, in cases where the lease makes Lessee responsible for the property taxes) petitions a taxing body, showing evidence that the subject property has been over assessed.  An over assessment of the property results in higher property taxes.

Residential, commercial, industrial—really any real property (i.e. land and buildings) that is subject to property taxes.

It depends on the schedule for your township, which means the schedule to appeal varies by where you live.  The appeal deadlines are published online.

“Market Value”  is the amount that the property, in its current condition, would sell for to a willing buyer.  The best evidence of Market Value is the actual sales price of a property transfer.  However, Market Value is harder to determine once you have owned your property for a longer time.

A Comparable Property, also referred to as a “Comp”, is a property that is close to your property, both geographically and building size and type.  Comparable Properties are used as evidence in a Property Tax Appeal.  The more similar the Comparable Property is to your property, the better suited it is for use as evidence in an appeal.

Property Tax Counsel used proprietary software to seek out the best comparables for your appeal.

Property Tax Counsel recommends that property owners appeal annually.

Yes, Property Tax Counsel handles property tax appeals for all types of real property.  Just contact us.

Yes, Property Tax Counsel handles property tax appeals for all types of real property.  Please contact us for assistance.

You own nothing unless we are successful.  Property Tax Counsel receives a percentage of your first years tax savings, even though the savings will continue for up to three years.

You pay Property Tax Counsel directly.  We accept payment by all major credit cards using our secure payment portal, or, if you prefer, you may pay via check or money order.

A successful appeal lowers your Assessed Value.  This  a reduction in property taxes.  In a reassessment year, property taxes increase because (almost always) Assessed Value increases.  In a reassessment year, a successful appeal means that property taxes increase less that they would otherwise.

It could be as little as eight weeks.  Depending on your taxing authorities, it may take substantially longer.

In Cook County, taxes are paid in arrears.  So, for example, 2017 property taxes are paid in 2018.  The reduction should be reflected in your next tax bill.