Check your tax assessors website if you are building!
If you are building, take a few minutes to check your tax assessors website! Most property valuations are made by April 1, and when I logged on to check our property, they had combined the basement and top two floors square footage, didn't take out unfinished parts of the basement (they missed a mechanical room and an entire guest wing that we brought to sheetrock and then stopped finishing). Needless to say, main floors and upstairs are taxed more heavily than basements and over the garage playrooms (which they also had too big - we have an unfinished storage area that they didn't subtract up there).
I was able to reduce our total square footage by 1300 square feet, and was able to get 1930 of the remaining finished square footage area placed in the basement where it belongs ;)
This reduced our top two floor square footage by 3300 square feet or so, when you add all of it up. Needless to say, this will have a significant impact on my tax bill.
I was able to do this over the phone, with a conversation with the tax assessor and my plans in hand. He also wanted to know the appraised value from our loan, which I was happy to give him since we appraised so low and had to come up with cash to build . . .
Worth a few minutes of your time!