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Nothing Says the Holidays Like the Arrival of a Tax Bill

As the Holidays approach, New Hampshire property taxpayers are receiving the last of the tax bills issued by their towns and cities. Each municipality must wait until the tax rate is set by Department of Revenue Administration’s Municipal and Property Division. This year the earliest tax rate was set on Columbus Day and the latest tax rate just before Thanksgiving Day. Once the tax rates are set, and the tax bills have been sent out,


the period in which to appeal an assessment begins, ending on March 1. Individuals cannot appeal the tax rate (although the municipalities have a right to appeal the tax rate), but they may appeal the assessed value of their property on which the tax is assessed.


During this Holiday Season or shortly after it, it is a good idea to keep in touch with the assessor for your municipality. If you have a question about your assessment, it can never hurt to ask for an explanation. The best assessors will be responsive to your questions.


Apart, from asking questions about your assessment, you should take a hard look at the valuation for your property. The most common reason for requesting an abatement is over-valuation. Is the valuation close to what you think the property would sell for or is it substantially over what you think you could sell it for? Are there any properties similar to yours nearby? How are they assessed? Have there been any sales of properties like yours? These are the type of questions that you will need to know in order to decide whether to file an abatement.


Here are a few facts about the tax rates in New Hampshire that you can talk about during Holiday gatherings.


The top ten tax rates in NH for 2019 are as follows:


1. Berlin - $39.82

2. Charlestown - $39.11

3. Keene - $37.60

4. Winchester - $35.64

5. Henniker - $35.34

6. Jaffrey - $34.80

7. Penacook - $34.10

8. Hinsdale - $34.07

9. Gorham - $33.77

10. Canaan - $32.93


Geography certainly matters as the taxpayers who are paying the highest property tax rates are located in the North Country, the Monadnock Region or in fairly close proximity to the State Capitol.


Among the 10 biggest municipalities by population, the tax rates are as follows (sorted by size of city by population):


1. Manchester - $24.32

2. Nashua - $21.76

3. Concord - $27.78

4. Derry - $26.12

5. Dover - $25.19

6. Rochester - $24.90

7. Salem - $21.98

8. Merrimack - $24.13

9. Hudson - $20.28

10. Londonderry - $19.39


The municipalities with the lowest tax rates, excluding unincorporated places, are as follows:


1. Moultonborough - $7.15

2. Newington - $9.34

3. Hebron - $9.69

4. Bridgewater - $9.76

5. Tuftonboro - $10.11

6. Rye - $10.22

7. Jackson - $11.26

8. Monroe - $11.34

9. Windsor - $11.81

10. Eaton - $12.05


Because property values are influenced by the proximity to bodies of water, the lower tax rate towns tend to be near large bodies of water.


Enjoy the Holidays and have a happy New Decade!


Allobar Strategies provides professional assistance in evaluating the fairness of property tax assessments. If you would like assistance with an evaluation of your property tax, please visit Allobar Strategies or call (603) 333-2211.


By: John F. Hayes, Esq., General Counsel to Allobar Strategies.


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