Success Stories

Case Study – Fortune 500 company sought out CRE Tax Appeal to save $400,000+ annually 

A retail big box chain hired CRE Tax Appeal to review the company’s California locations, determine which stores were being over-assessed, and win the appeals. Company executives raved about our diligence, creativity, and resourcefulness in helping them achieve their goals. Outsourcing tax appeal has saved the company money and time. A common mistake companies and other agents make is to file appeals for every location – prequalifying the appeals reduced time spent by 80%.

Case Study – Fortune 500 company sought out CRE Tax Appeal to save $6,000,000

A retail department store chain hired CRE Tax Appeal to resolve the company’s backlog of assessment appeals and create $6,000,000 of property tax refunds. Within a few days of being hired, CRE Tax Appeal presented a valuation and obtained a reduction on the company’s first appeal. Outsourcing tax appeal has saved the company money, time, and frustration – company executives were impressed that CRE Tax Appeal won appeals that their in-house team had not been successful with in prior years.

 Case Study – International company headquartered in California saves $500,000+

A company that does business globally and is headquartered here in California has worked with CRE Tax Appeal to save more than $500,000 on their property taxes.  Company’s real estate portfolio is comprised of their campus, office buildings, and vacant land. 

Case Study – Hotelier saves $500,000+ from resolving a Base Year appeal

A hotelier had bought a property during the Great Recession for about $17M. The Assessor’s office set the assessment at more than double the purchase price which crippled the cash flow and profitability of the hotel. Legal counsel for the hotelier filed a Base Year appeal to reduce the property taxes as of the purchase date but were ineffective at resolving the appeal. As a result of the property taxes being based on an artificially high value and that appeal being unresolved, the outrageously high property taxes forced the property owner to sell the hotel well before the end of their holding period. CRE Tax Appeal was appointed as agent and created total tax refunds of about $575,000 for the hotelier.

Case Study – Real estate developer saves $250,000+

A real estate developer has received more than $250,000 of refunds due to CRE Tax Appeal reviewing their portfolio and reducing assessments for 17 properties.  The portfolio is comprised of a variety of commercial properties and vacant land.  CRE Tax Appeal toured the properties, prepared valuations, negotiated and won appeals worth more than $250,000 of refunds to the developer.

 Case Study – Auto dealership chain saves $200,000+

Auto dealership chain reduced operating costs by $200,000 by having CRE Tax Appeal review entire portfolio, identify several over-assessed dealerships, filing appeals, and successfully resolving each appeal for several years now.

 Case Study – Real estate developer saves $100,000+ annually

For recently constructed properties, a real estate developer was being charged property taxes on an assessed value that was substantially more than their cost to acquire the land and build the property. CRE Tax Appeal challenged the Base Year value of this developer’s properties and won by demonstrating to the Assessor’s office that their cost estimates were too high when compared to industry standards. This developer saves $100,000+ annually as a result. 

Case Study – Fortune 100 company gets $100,000+ refund

The Assessor’s office did not want to consider any reduction to a large, old office building due to a zoning change in the neighborhood that they perceived as increasing the value of this building.  CRE Tax Appeal prepared a valuation analyzing the market data which revealed that neither sales prices nor rents were being influenced by this zoning change.  The Assessment Appeals Board agreed with CRE Tax Appeal’s valuation and a six-figure refund was the result.

 Case Study – Specialty manufacturer saves $50,000 annually by correcting depreciation of assets

Specialty manufacturer was being charged $50,000 too much annually in Business Personal Property taxes. CRE Tax Appeal was contracted to review company’s personal property assets with their accounting team. During audit, two main issues were uncovered: misclassification of assets and incorrect depreciation schedules being applied to assets. CRE Tax Appeal researched Board of Equalization guidelines and found documentation to support a shorter life-span for this type of specialty manufacturing equipment. The specialty equipment was the largest component of their personal property assets and correcting the life-span saved this company $50,000 each year. 

Case Study – Correcting supplemental bill before 2nd installment due saves $110,000 annually

A real estate investment company bought an apartment complex for $80 million.  After the purchase, the Assessor’s office incorrectly valued the property’s value as of the date of sale at $90 million.  CRE Tax Appeal filed a supplemental appeal and immediately prepared a valuation and exchanged data with the Assessor’s office.  After several negotiations, the Assessor’s office agreed that $80 million was Fair Market Value.  This correction saved the company about $110,000 in taxes annually.  Due to the fast resolution, the company had the second installment of the supplemental bill reduced to zero.

Case Study – County had wrong property type, correcting saves owner $200,000

A property owner received a total of $200,000 of refunds due to the County incorrectly valuing the property as an office when it was part office and part warehouse.  CRE Tax Appeal toured the property with the owner, prepared a valuation, and presented data and photographs which resulted in $200,000 of refunds.

Case Study – Vacant land vastly over-assessed, appealing saves $80,000

A property owner was being charged about three times the fair amount of taxes and got a total of $80,000 of refunds. CRE Tax Appeal prepared a valuation and negotiated with the Assessor’s office to reduce the value by about 65% percent to Fair Market Value.

Case Study – County overvalued medical office buildings, appealing saves $120,000

A real estate investment company got a total of $120,000 of refunds due to the County overvaluing medical office buildings as best-in-class buildings when they were average for the market.  CRE Tax Appeal toured the property with the leasing agent, prepared a valuation, and presented data and photographs which resulted in $120,000 of refunds.

Case Study – Country club homeowner gets $20,000 more by rejecting settlement offer

A homeowner in The Vintage Club saved an extra $20,000 by letting CRE Tax Appeal reject Assessor’s settlement offer and do what we do best: present appeals to produce property tax savings. Homeowner trusted us due to our track record of helping reducing taxes on homes in the area.

Case Study – Assessor charges buyer $25,000 too much in taxes, seller recommends buyer work with us

Real estate investor buys property and Assessor issues tax bill based on a Base Year assessed value that is 127% of the purchase price. Based upon recommendation from prior owner, CRE Tax Appeal was retained to challenge the Assessor’s Base Year assessed value. Assessor refused to negotiate, so CRE Tax Appeal presented the appeal to the Assessment Appeals Board and got the Base Year assessment reduced exactly to the purchase price saving investor $25,000 each year. 

Case Study – Former agent not helping owner, CRE Tax Appeal fixes situation & saves owner $20,000 each year

Property owner bought a property in foreclosure. The Assessor’s office enrolled an assessed value about 35% higher than the purchase price. A different tax agency was hired and they filed Proposition 8, decline-in-value appeals to maximize their profits. CRE Tax Appeal contacted the owner to advise them to file a Base Year appeal to challenge the Assessor’s office determination of value at 35% more than what was paid for the property owner. Once property owner understood that a Base Year appeal would permanently resolve the over-taxation and that they would only pay CRE Tax Appeal once for a lifetime of savings, they fired their former agent and hired CRE Tax Appeal. We resolved the Base Year appeal for the owner saving $20,000 annually.  

Case study – Property owner hired CRE Tax Appeal three days before hearing

The Los Angeles County Assessor’s office refused to give a property owner any tax relief despite the owner sending market data to the Assessor’s office.  On Friday, CRE Tax Appeal was hired by property owner.  CRE Tax Appeal performed an evaluation of the property, produced a pertinent valuation report with persuasive market evidence, and appeared at the hearing on Tuesday for the property owner to deliver expert testimony in support of a reduced value.  The Assessment Appeals Board agreed with CRE Tax Appeal’s value completely due to the clear and compelling market data presented on the property owner’s behalf.

Case study – Homeowner gets $15,000 refund three months after filing appeal

Homeowner did not realize his home was being over-assessed by about $1,300,000 annually and that this was unnecessarily costing him $15,000 each year in excess property taxation before CRE Tax Appeal contacted him.  After consulting the homeowner on why an appeal should be filed and how it works, the homeowner agreed that an appeal should be filed and wanted CRE Tax Appeal to take care of all the work for him.  CRE Tax Appeal filed an appeal, proactively reached out to the Assessor’s office and negotiated a settlement that produced a $15,000 refund for homeowner.

Case study – Industrial property owner gets additional 25% reduction in taxes with help from CRE Tax Appeal

Property was originally being taxed for about $87,000 each year.  Assessor and property owner discussed the assessment as property owner thought assessment was excessive.  Assessor agreed to reduce taxes to about $63,000 each year and told property owner the taxes were fair at that amount.  Once property owner spoke with CRE Tax Appeal, the owner understood that although the Assessor has lowered the taxes, total taxes should be about $48,000 and Assessor’s office was still overtaxing them by $15,000.  CRE Tax Appeal filed an assessment appeal for the property owner and presented an appeal that was so persuasive that the decision matched CRE Tax Appeal’s valuation.  Property owner will get $15,000 in refunds and peace-of-mind that CRE Tax Appeal is minimizing their taxes.

Case study – County not allowed to use confidential income and expense data

The Riverside County Assessor’s office has been using confidential data on income and expenses obtained from other property owners to present as rent comparable data at public hearings.  CRE Tax Appeal thoroughly researched the applicable legal issues, prepared a legal brief, and argued against an attorney for Riverside County.  CRE Tax Appeal challenged the legality of the assessor using confidential information at public hearings during a legal hearing on April 16th, 2015 and won.  The Assessment Appeals Board ruled that the assessor’s data is confidential, belonging to other property owners, and must be excluded from evidence according to the provisions of the Revenue and Taxation Code. This landmark decision marks the end of an unjust practice for the Riverside County Assessor’s office. The Assessor’s office had used this practice to present rent comparable data, which was obtained from other property owners, to justify their assessed values.  The Assessor’s office may no longer use data obtained confidentially from other property owners at appeal hearings.  In the future, all data used by the assessor must be from a public source so that the data can be cross-examined and independently verified.

Case study – County not working with prior tax consultant

We were contacted by the manager of a unique entertainment property to resolve their outstanding tax appeals because the county assessor was not working with their current property tax consultant.  CRE Tax Appeal coordinated a visit to the subject property, conducted interviews with managers and owners of similar entertainment properties, researched the market for these properties, determined a fair market value for this entertainment property, and found relevant case law to support the valuation methodology used.  The presentation of these appeals required more than six hours of testimony, reviewing thousands of pages of information, and presenting a persuasive case with about 200 pages of evidence.  The judges ruled in the property owner’s favor and $100,000+ was refunded to the property owner.

Case study – County had incorrect property type

CRE Tax Appeal worked with a real estate developer who built an apartment building in Southern California during the peak of the recession and unfortunately lost the property to foreclosure.  The developer purchased the land and began construction right before the great recession tanked the real estate market.  Despite the market-wide drop in real estate values, the county assessor did not listen to the developer or his property tax consultant, a retired assessor from another county.  Once we understood the developer’s situation and he understood that we would diligently and aggressively resolve his appeal, he was eager to work with CRE Tax Appeal.  The county assessor insisted that the apartment building should be appraised as condominiums.  Using the Revenue & Taxation Code along with other supporting laws, CRE Tax Appeal demonstrated that the property should be evaluated as an apartment building and supported a tax reduction using apartment buildings as comparable sales.  After the court hearing, the judges ruled in favor of the property owner and refunded 33% of his property taxes.

Case study – County had incorrect building size

In early March, we were contacted by the owner of a luxury automobile auto dealership to replace their current property tax consultant with CRE Tax Appeal.  The owner hired us because of Joe Reinagel’s auto dealership expertise and reputation for creating results.  The appeal was scheduled for mid-April.  The county assessor had a much larger measurement for building size than what other data sources displayed; this often indicates a property is overtaxed.  To resolve this difference, the county assessor and Joe Reinagel visited the auto dealership to measure the building.  After a series of negotiations, the county assessor agreed with Joe Reinagel to refund $41,000 in property taxes to the property owner.  These success stories are written to emphasize the service and value we provide to clients – one of the ways we provide value is through anonymity; we respect our client’s privacy by omitting specific details.

Case study – Prior tax consultant withdrew client’s appeal

In February, we contacted the owner of a 350,000+ SF industrial warehouse to represent them at their upcoming tax appeal hearing scheduled for mid-March.  During discussions with the property owner, they explained that their agent had already withdrawn the appeal and they were not sure what they could do.  CRE Tax Appeal explained how we were going to fix the situation.  Property owner engaged CRE Tax Appeal to represent them at their upcoming hearing.  CRE Tax Appeal rescinded the withdrawal of the appeal and reinstated the appeal.  CRE Tax Appeal facilitated an exchange of information between the property owner and the county assessor.  Because of the prior withdrawal of the tax appeal by the previous tax consultant, the county assessor did not even want to negotiate reducing the property taxes.  CRE Tax Appeal prepared an evaluation of the property with market data and legal arguments.  At the hearing, we presented evidence on behalf of the property owner to the Assessment Appeals Board.  CRE Tax Appeal’s efforts resulted in a $32,000 property tax refund to the property owner.

Case study – Helped a client reduce their property taxes by more than 50%

The appeal was referred to CRE Tax Appeal by a national consulting firm that was looking for local expertise to help a client they represented. We took over the appeal and immediately contacted the Assessor’s office to negotiate a fair settlement. The Assessor’s office was unwilling to consider any reduction and therefore CRE Tax Appeal presented evidence at the Assessment Appeals Board hearing. The Board ruled completely in favor of the property owner and a 54% reduction was granted.

Case study – Property owner hired CRE Tax Appeal within three weeks of hearing

San Diego property owner was having difficulty getting his property’s assessment reduced by 22% to Fair Market Value.  Property owner assigned CRE Tax Appeal to handle his appeal three weeks before his scheduled hearing.  Within two days, CRE Tax Appeal finalized the property’s valuation and opened negotiations with the County Assessor for a 22% reduction of the assessed value.  The County Assessor was not open to reducing the assessment despite market data that showed the assessment was too high and insisted upon inspecting the property.  CRE Tax Appeal coordinated the inspection of the property with the County Assessor and the property owner.  CRE Tax Appeal also inspected the owner’s property and all of the comparable sales in the local market.  On the day of the hearing, the valuation was presented to the Assessment Appeals Board with supporting data, documentation, case law, and legal arguments.  Result: property owner got a 22% assessment reduction to the fair market value.  Property owner received 100% of the reduction requested and is 100% satisfied.

Case study – Purchase price does not always equal market value

A property owner paid more than market value to buy a piece of real estate that had strategic value for them.  CRE Tax Appeal researched this transaction and what properties similar to this one were selling for.  We contacted the property owner to discuss the transaction; they admitted that they paid more than what they thought the property was worth.  We explained how we could help reduce their assessed value to the market value; below the purchase price of the property.  Once the appeal was scheduled, CRE Tax Appeal negotiated a 14% reduction of the assessed value.

Case study – Maximized tax savings by rejecting settlement offer

This property owner was represented by another tax consultant. When we contacted the owner, he stated he had not been contacted for nearly one year by his consultant and had not received any recent updates. After explaining his frustrations, he decided to use CRE Tax Appeal. We attended the hearing on the owner’s behalf and declined the settlement offer from the Assessor’s office. After presenting our evidence, we achieved a reduction that was 67% larger than the assessor’s settlement offer.

Case study – Customer service still the best way to outperform competitors

This property owner had been working with another property tax consultant for several years.  Each year, the property owner was getting smaller tax refunds and declining customer service.  Frustrated, the owner contacted CRE Tax Appeal based on a referral from a friend.  The owner explained the situation and what expectations they had; CRE Tax Appeal helped the property owner by reporting updates whenever the owner wanted them and following up with the county regularly.  As a result, the appeals were resolved favorably at a 20% property tax reduction for the owner after several negotiations with the county assessor.

Case study – Optimizing real estate portfolio performance

CRE Tax Appeal began working with the owner of several automobile dealerships to reduce their property taxes.  Only two of the owner’s automobile dealerships were over-assessed and appeals were filed on those in 2013.  As of January 2015, one of the appeals was scheduled by the county assessor and resolved favorably for the owner.  Winning this appeal refunded $15,000+ to the property owner.  CRE Tax Appeal works as a trusted advisor to this property owner, and all of our clients, by providing updates throughout the resolution process, tracking the refund check with the county treasurer and auditor, and evaluating all properties that a client owns, not just the ones we file appeals on, to maximize tax reductions.

Testimonials

Brett and Joe help Sunroad Enterprises ensure that our property taxes are fair.  I am very happy with the results they have created.  They are experts on property tax, and we enjoy consulting with them on property tax issues.
Jim McLennan

Sunroad Enterprises, San Diego, California

If you own commercial real estate and want to lower your real estate taxes, choose to work with Joseph Reinagel and Brett Ulyate of CRE Tax Appeal.  My company has saved more than $150,000 as a result of their expertise and diligence.
Casey Griffin

Wilson Automotive, Newport Beach, California

We wish to express our appreciation for the dedication and attention of CRE Tax Appeal for the past several years in working with the Assessor’s office to successfully appeal the assessments of our property and obtain reductions. These continued efforts have saved us over $160,000 in property tax payments that would have been lost without your involvement. Your services were paramount in providing our company with tax savings.

Steven M. Wallace

Wallace Properties, Inc., Oxnard, California

I asked CRE Tax Appeal on Friday to represent me at my upcoming hearing for next Tuesday.  They prepared reports detailing why my property should get a tax reduction and persuaded the Board to agree with their valuation.  I am getting a tax refund of about $25,000 thanks to their quick and diligent work.
Kami Solouki

Housewares International, Los Angeles, California

We annually receive refunds from the county as a result of using CRE Tax Appeal!  My favorite part is that I do close to nothing except authorize CRE Tax Appeal to do the work.  Seems too good to be true except it is; I have used your service for three years now and have been refunded about $12,000 since becoming your client.  I would recommend CRE Tax Appeal because they keep me informed as to the status of all my appeals.
Cathy Cardiff

Cardiff Limousine, Palm Desert, California

When CRE Tax Appeal contacted me, I was excited that they could save me money and that there were no hidden costs – just a success fee.  I was impressed by the professionalism with which you handled the appeals.  Your service was great and I recommend it.
David Carden

Riverside, California

CRE Tax Appeal contacted me to see if they could reduce my property tax bill.  Well, they did to the tune of $4,200 and quickly (less than three months).  I have already received a revised bill from the county.  CRE Tax Appeal was nice to work with too.  I have passed along their name to my colleagues.  I was impressed!
Dennis Baldwin

Indio, California

I worried that CRE Tax Appeal would not do a good job and would waste my time.  They did a great job preparing the detailed information for my property and presented it well to the Assessment Appeals Board.  As a result, I received a substantial refund.  CRE Tax Appeal is professional, diligent, and responsive.  I would highly recommend their services to anyone.
Chinyeh Hostler

San Diego, California

I highly recommend Joe Reinagel for any real estate valuation services. He will spend time with the owner explaining the factors that affect value as well as any comps in the marketplace. His analytics and valuation methods have been proven, time after time, through the amount of refunds he has won his clients in appeals throughout the state of California.
Robert Birney

Scottsdale, Arizona

I had the pleasure of working closely with Joe for nearly two years.  His total commitment to his clients was beyond compare.  He has one of the finest analytic minds I have ever encountered.  He grasps complex concepts readily and has a keen attention for detail.  Joe has a broad range of interests, a hunger for knowledge, and a drive for self-improvement.
Bob McAmis

San Diego, California