The County Property Appraiser sends out its “Truth in Millage” notice during the last half of August every year and this is your “heads up” before the actual property tax bill comes out in November.

If you bought a house in 2021, this is especially something to pay close attention to because it’s going to tell you what your newly reassessed property taxes will look like and how they align with the escrow account that the mortgage company is using to pay the property tax bill.

THIS IS WHERE AND HOW ALMOST ALL ESCROW SHORTAGES HAPPEN.

If you already have your TRIM notice, take a look at the proposed taxes shown. Now log in to your mortgage account (or call the mortgage company) and check your escrow balance. You’ll also be able to see what portion of your monthly escrow is allotted for property taxes. 

  • Will your escrow balance be sufficient to pay your proposed property taxes this November?   
  • Is the monthly escrow amount on par with the taxes with the new tax bill?

The emotions of TRIM notice receipt

If it looks like your mortgage company isn’t collecting enough, this is where you can determine how deficient your escrow account will be so you can be ready to overcome it. You may choose to proactively deposit the estimated amount of the deficiency into your escrow account, or you can wait until the mortgage company figures it out and sends you the dreaded escrow shortage letter. Either way works but the most important thing is that you are not getting caught off guard by the news in the first place.

While you are reviewing your TRIM notice, go ahead and ensure that you have homestead exemption if you live in the home that you own and any other applicable exemptions.

**Additionally, If any homeowner disagrees with the value assessed by the property appraiser, they can initially ask for an informal review. Please note that there is a tight deadline for taking it further with a formal petition so jump on it IMMEDIATELY if the value looks out of line. Most of us will have values that are significantly lower than your ACTUAL market value, so this is relatively uncommon. 

Duval County Property Appraiser’s Office: https://www.coj.net/departments/property-appraiser

 

Allison Muñoz is the owner and broker of Bold City Real Estate. She is passionate about her hometown of Jacksonville, Florida but helps both buyers and sellers in most areas of Northeast Florida. Her background in real estate law made the transition to selling homes an easy one and she prides herself on being available, adaptable, and transparent with her clients. She can be reached at 904-210-8387 or by email at Allison@BoldCityLife.com.