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Photograph and/or Videotape Your Property In Its Present Condition 

The value of the property is to be determined as of the date of the taking without regard to the pending nature of the taking. This means that the physical condition of the property at the time that the potential taking is announced is just as relevant as the physical condition of the property on the date that the taking authority actually records the Order of Taking. Therefore, if the property deteriorates between the time that you learn that your property may be taken and the time that the taking authority actually aquires it, then you should not be penalized. The best way to avoid this is to make an effort to videotape and/or photograph the property in its present condition.

Do Not File Any Requests for Tax Abatements

Applications for tax abatements are documents that become available to the taking authority. The taking authority would have the ability to create an argument that the application for an abatement indicates that the value of the property is as low as is set forth on the application for the abatement.

Do Not Sign Any Paperwork Provided By The Taking Authority

The taking authority is required to pay a pro tanto payment and the property owner has the right to proceed with litigation and obtain the full, fair market value of the property. However, often the paperwork can be incorrectly prepared and there is a danger that the property owner might unknowingly sign a release.

Do Not Have The Property Appraised By A Real Estate Appraiser 

If a real estate appraiser appraises the property, the appraisal is a document that must be provided to the taking authority. If the appraised value is not above the taking authority's offer, it can then become very difficult to press forward for claim.

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