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Cook County Vacant Land Appeals: Here’s What You Need to Know

By Gary Smith
Cook County Vacant Land Appeals: Here’s What You Need to Know

Unimproved real estate in Cook County could have its property valuation appealed the same as a residential or commercial property. Here’s what owners need to know.

How to Appeal Vacant Land 

Similar to residential and commercial property tax appeals, a vacant land appeal can only be submitted with its supporting documentation when the property’s township is open for appeals. Those dates are available on the Cook County Assessor’s website.

All Class 1 appeals require the following documentation:

  • Real Estate Assessed Valuation Appeal Form
  • Property Summary Sheet
  • Owner/Lessee Verification Affidavit
  • Field check request, if applicable

These documents need to be signed and notarized.

Depending on the type of appeal, there might be additional documentation:

Appeals based on valuation: This type of appeal requires a list of comparable properties within the neighborhood that are similar in size classification. The Permanent Index Number (PINs) should be written on the vacant land appeal. Property owners also can submit a competent appraisal expressing an opinion of fair marketing value as of Jan. 1 of the year in question.

Appeals based on incorrect land measurement: A copy of an existing survey or a copy of the property’s legal description, which could be on the title, sale documents, or survey.

Appeals based on recent sale price: The additional documents could include a sales questionnaire or closing statement. Property owners might also include a purchase contract, real estate transfer declaration, or a copy of the recorded deed.

The property is vacant with residential ownership: The required document is the recorded deeds for vacant and residential parcels.

The property is located in a floodplain: Property owners will need a letter from the city or the village, floodplain maps, and a report or letter from the engineer.

Land pricing does not reflect wetland pricing: Required documents include a report or a letter from the engineer, Army Corps of Engineer letter, or a letter from the city or the village.

Detention/retention area: The required document is a current plan of survey illustrating area.

Improvement has been wrecked or removed: The required documents are a demolition affidavit, paid receipt for demolition, and a demolition permit.

Appeals based on a government restriction of the land: Documentation and evidence of the land restriction from the government entity that is restricting the use of the parcel.

All of the forms for filing these appeals are available on the Cook County Assessor’s Office under the Appeals tab.