I spent most of last weekend pulling ‘comps’ for clients looking to protest their 2017 property tax assessments. Larimer County has a nifty feature that allows you to pull up your own comps (sales that are comparable), but they don’t have all the features provided by our local MLS. Has it been remodeled? Was it a hoarder’s paradise? Was it a bi-level or ranch with one bedroom on the main with a weed production facility in the basement? We can’t always tell if someone has been growing pot but sometimes the signs are all there. Attributing mold on the ceiling and a persistent earthy odor to the seller’s penchant for indoor plants can be disingenuous.
Back to my point…the assessments are all over the place. But they all went up. Some by 10% (a few), some by 50% or more. Keep in mind that these are values as of June 30, 2016. We saw another major appreciation event last summer so don’t automatically think that your evaluation for 2017 is a done deal. You might have a case for protest if the valuation reflects this year and not 18 months ago. Yes, we keep having solid 5-20% appreciation each year depending on neighborhood, price and square feet.
Assessment Rate Down….
Our valuations are based on a complicated (for me, anyway) algorithm with a couple of multipliers. The assessment rate is one of them and was expected to fall from 7.9 to 6.56, which would have done 2 things—one, bring a little relief to homeowners and two, cause $100 million in cuts to schools, local governments, and special districts that provide services such as utilities, ambulances, and fire protection. Instead, recommendations to the state legislature was to reduce the rate to 7.2, bringing a sigh of relief to a lot of county managers. If you want to know by how much your taxes will increase, go to: http://larimer.org/assessor/click 2017 Evaluations and put in your info and follow instructions.
Too much information? My apologies, but you should know why you pay property taxes. You should also know that if you turned 65 on or before January 1, 2017, and you have owned your personal residence for more than 10 years, you qualify for the Senior Exemption on your property tax. That means you pay half the taxes on the first $200,000 of the value of your property. YOU MUST CONTACT THE COUNTY SOON!
Or give me a call. I can help.
And we will know by July if any of the protests have been successful. Don’t worry, I’ll keep you posted.