Protest your property tax assessment!

By:  Diane Benjamin

You can’t protest yet, but sometime early next year you will get a new assessment in the mail.  Property values are dropping all over Bloomington-Normal.  Keep track of comparable house around you.  Both Bloomington and Normal are in for a huge budget shock if the local assessors are fair.

See this story I did on other areas of both Bloomington and Normal:

The houses below are located in the most expensive parts of town.  I picked them because I keep hearing expensive houses aren’t selling even with reduced prices.  This information comes from both the County website and Zillow.  It’s amazing how much information is missing on the County website – especially sales history.

Keep in mind – NONE of these houses have Sold (as of Friday).  The prices could go lower.  These are random samples of what’s on the market.


Hawthorne Hills – 5 Houses for Sale on Zillow

4 Smokey Court – Listed in January 2018 for $725,000 – now listed at $549,900

4 Weaver Court – Bought in 2007 for $400,000; Listed in April 2017 for $399,000, now reduced to $364,000 – taken off the market Friday afternoon

3217 Wisteria Lane – Listed in April 2018 for $375,000, now reduced to $369,000

15 Smokey Court – Bought in 1992 for $219,822; Listed in March 2018 for $339,900, now reduced to $299,900

Hawthorne II – 2 Houses for Sale on Zillow

8 Carney Court – Bought in 2015 for $423,000; Listed in April 2018 for $399,900. now reduced to $369,900

102 Hawthorne Lake Drive – Foreclosure in 2011; Listed in June 2018 for $419,900, now reduced to $399,000

Hedgewood – 21 houses for sale on Zillow

2710 Vrooman Court – Bought in 2007 for $485,000; Listed in May 2018 for $450,000

2813 Stevenson Drive – Bought in 2008 for $396,250; Listed in March 2018 for $359,250, now reduced to $339,900

2812 Hubbard Dr – First listed in 2010 for $409,700 – Listed now for $360,000

44 Arbor Court – Bought in 2014 for  $285,000; Listed in August 2017 for $299,900, now reduced to $289,900

1912 Dimmitt Court – Bought in 2006 for $390,000; Listed on and off since 2010, now priced at $349,900














12 thoughts on “Protest your property tax assessment!

  1. I appealed 3 properties a couple of years ago and one went down and lo and behold the next year it went up higher. Both city councils had better realize we are on a downturn. There have to be cuts in city government expenditures. Common sense would tell anyone there needs to be tightening of all budgets but neither council has shown common sense.

  2. I would like to personally thank Bloomington and Normal Town Councils for not representing the citizens they serve. We couldn’t have gotten here without you. Your spending habits are only ensuring one thing. There will be no conservatives left when you are done because those who work and pay taxes will become weary of carrying all the burdens. Bloomington will soon look just like Maxine’s District. 👏👏👏

  3. Lower and middle priced homes are still selling… Higher priced houses are not or are selling for less. There will soon be a glut of higher end houses here. Who is going to buy the high end homes being vacated by high paid State Farm employees who are leaving the area? Yes this will have an effect on many real estate brokers in town. I expect that their will be a shakeout by fall with many real estate brokers being forced out of business.

    1. When they started building these over sized houses, I made the comment to friends that these someday be the next slum area in Blm-UnNrml. If you have ever spoken to moving co. packers they will tell you most were for show as most only had furniture that a guest would see and the rest of the rooms became like a Mini-Warehouse.

  4. First of all, the appeal process for tax year 2018 (setting the assessed value as of 01/01/18) will be late summer/fall this year (2018), depending upon when each township assessor submits his/her books to the McLean County Supervisor of Assessments. Secondly, the assessed value of every property in the county could be cut in half and it wouldn’t change your tax bill a bit. That’s because each taxing body would still ask for the amount they need, thus increasing the tax rate to offset the 50% reduction. There are two ways an individual can decrease their tax bill: 1) the taxing bodies require less, and/or 2) the individual appeals their assessed value and it is lowered, (as Diane is suggesting). The second method works well for the individual but shoves the lowered individual amount onto the other taxpayers. I’ve long advocated for better, more accurate assessing, especially when it comes to property attributes that are not on the record. Such as a finished basement, added bath, et cet.

      1. all the readers here and their friends and relatives getting lowered assessments and thus increasing the tax bills of the ignorant sheep may cause them to wake up and smell the bs, and vote more responsibly. So please Do protest.

  5. I have 2 houses, one here and another in a far southern Illinois county, I have 5 acres in the other county plus a comparable house, my taxes in Bloomington on my postage stamp yard are higher than the taxes in the southern county – What’s wrong with that picture? I just may indeed protest my assessment next time – plus, I know I SHOULD get double what I paid for this house since there has been a lot of work done on it – I will be settling for less than that I am sorely afraid unless I do a bunch of curb-appeal/cosmetic improvements as well. The powers that be need to wake up – hopefully they will soon become the powers that WERE and things MIGHT get better around here. People don’t move so that they can work at the next burger joint or next wing place or a fantasy car manufacturer and I am wondering which hotel will be closing next – Also I have made a little hobby of sorts of driving around in the evening and checking out the cars at some of the local hotels, their occupancy is far from optimal let’s just leave it at that, so another hotel is NOT the answer Tarry, Chris and Company…How about working to bring in something that might actually employ a lot of people at a decent wage so that people may want to move here, or, would that not be the “right fit”?

    1. I’ll bet you have a ton more services here in Bloomington than you do at your other property. And if you spent so much that your house here is worth twice as much as you paid for it, then you overbuilt and priced yourself out of the neighborhood. Simple as that.

      1. Yes it’s all your fault Mr. and Mrs.Taxpayer/home owner! What do you expect when you add a couple stories to your home or build that “guest house?” Well you are just pricing yourself out of your gated community! Someone has to pay for the increased services that you will be using and not paying directly for…. Yes the property taxes here are some of the highest in the nation… but look at the value? Do I have to list the fantastic organizations or initiatives your tax dollars support and how they directly effect your well-being? OK here is just a couple from Bloomington: 1. The Coliseum 2. The BCPA So get your mind right and stop improving your home and building silly stuff, shut up, and pay your taxes!

  6. Everyone absolutely should challenge their property assessments. Talking to a realtor friend, he said that when State Farm moves people they guarantee the house sale via a third company. The company that is dealing with the sale pushes to sell the houses faster which means a lower sale price which in turn drives down the overall property values.

    I have a friend who lives in the Seattle area. They pay 1.25% of assessed value for their property taxes. I pay 2.68% (at least I’m pretty sure that’s what it was last I checked). Washington State has no income tax. IL is 5% with the dems wanting more with a progressive income tax. Let that sink in a little. Seattle, one of the most liberal places in the world, has half the property taxes (albeit property values are at least double) and 0% of the income tax.

  7. I have protested my property taxes many times, and recommend that property owners do it at least every 3 years. If you want a bullet-proof protest spend $350 on a formal appraisal. You’ll easily get your money back and more your very first tax year. If you simply present a few comparable sales you pulled off Zillow the appeals board can and will dismiss most of your claim because “you’re not a real estate professional and the comparables are not fully representative of your property”.

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