BY BRYAN HILEMAN
Property Valuation Services is recognized as the country’s preeminent property tax consulting firm. We are known for saving our clients money by reducing their property taxes, however even our clients may be surprised to learn that under one roof we provide an extensive amount of expert services. We felt it would be a good idea to dive into the myriad of services our experts can help with and how it all connects.
When Property Valuation Services started twenty-five years ago, we only worked within the business personal property realm filing returns for healthcare companies using our unique expertise in medical equipment to revalue these assets and lower property taxes. Twenty-five years later, that expertise has expanded to include saving the three largest theater companies in the country millions of dollars in property taxes on their projectors, manufacturing facilities on their equipment, leased equipment and, of course, we are still the only firm in the country with our multiple proven valuation methodologies to lower healthcare equipment property taxes. This is evident by the clients within our portfolio.
What you may not know is that we also house a licensed ASA equipment appraiser to assist in our valuation methodologies, tax base arguments, filings, appeals and hearings. He can perform formal appraisals, but as our Technical Director/ Quality Control Director, he spends his time ensuring our work remains detailed and of the highest level. Assessors trust when PVS files a value, it is accurate and thorough.
We started our real estate department with similar expertise as we did in healthcare. Focusing on what makes a healthcare facility specialized, PVS has developed valuation techniques to take advantage of this expert knowledge. From hospitals to medical office buildings, surgery centers, dialysis clinics, imaging centers, nursing homes and senior living facilities, PVS works thousands of healthcare parcels every year and are known throughout the country as the go-to firm for medical real estate consulting.
Not to be outdone, the real estate department also houses licensed MAI Appraisers so that they can utilize the highest level of expertise in the industry. Similar to our equipment appraisers, these appraisers do not perform a high volume of formal appraisals, instead this provides us the opportunity to further demonstrate expertise when representing our clients’ filing appeals and attending hearings. No property tax firm has to employ an appraiser, but PVS chooses to because we know it is what best helps our clients’ interests.
These appraisers are simultaneously employed by a separate company called Appraisal Solutions Group, owned by the same owners as Property Valuation Services. Should a formal appraisal be necessary and not related to an appeal by PVS, our appraisers can perform such an appraisal.
Filing business personal property tax returns and appeals, working real estate appeals and performing appraisals are not the only functions happening within our building. We offer all our clients what we refer to as our compliance services. For business personal property clients, these services are a part of the annual management fee collected that includes the filing of the return.
What is lesser known is that our compliance services are an option for our real estate clients as well. This would include tracking our clients’ assessment notices, tracking tax bills, providing electronic tax bill approvals, sending multiple reports per year outlining account status and estimated property tax amounts for budget/accrual purposes, and managing all of this property tax information in an online user web access portal. With a secure username and password, our clients can view their property tax information and run customized reports.
Another area of expertise some may not have experienced with PVS is our audit defense services. The word AUDIT can be scary, and for good reason. Audits can drag on for years, the statute period can be extended retroactively should the auditor find cause, and the potential back taxes, penalties and interest have literally bankrupted companies.
First, know that PVS’ filings are respected as top in the industry. Any asset revaluation work that goes into filing a return will include all backup data, likely communicated preemptively with the assessor prior to the return being filed, and we promise our clients that we will defend any and all reductions we made if they were to be called into question during an audit.
But going a step further, you never know when you will randomly be selected for a property tax audit. Most states have some sort of audit program, where certain states like California audit regularly every four years. Our experts have handled thousands of audits including everything from minimal concern random audits to multi-million-dollar assessments for major hospitals. We know how to mitigate liabilities and work with the Auditor to reduce findings so that you pay as little as possible.
So why consolidate all of your property tax responsibilities into one trusted building? Let me explain.
First, there was a prior article written pertaining to Lease Hold Improvements (LHI). In summary, these are the physical changes made inside a building so that the owner of the business can operate the business. At times, these improvements are considered real estate as they are a significant change to the inside of the building. Others consider these changes as business personal property as they are considered temporary additions to run the business. Without giving an opinion, the point is that often these are taxed by both the real estate assessor and the personal property assessor. If you do not have a firm handle on both, this could be easily missed.
It is also a good idea to utilize our compliance services so that both your real estate and business personal property information can be managed for you, and the information be uploaded to our online client web-access site for your convenience. This will allow you to view both business personal property and real estate information in one location.
Bottom line is that PVS is known across the country as the preeminent representation for healthcare organizations. This expertise isn’t just lip service; understanding healthcare equipment, healthcare building specifications and healthcare services has meant hundreds of millions of dollars in savings. These companies are owned and operated by former healthcare executives, tax experts and healthcare professionals.
If you work with PVS but feel there are other areas we could be further adding to the benefits being provided, please do not hesitate to reach out.