Real estate revaluation is now under way

The Washington County Auditor’s Office announces that preparation for the 2016 revaluation of all real estate in the county is underway. The revaluation is a State mandated review and inspection process that occurs once every six years. The Auditor’s Office has selected mass appraisal firm Barry R. Ankney, Inc. from a competitive proposal process as its partner to perform the revaluation.

For the past several months, both the Auditor and appraisal firm staffs have been gearing up for this important project. Over the next 12-14 months, members of the appraisal firm’s staff will be visiting each property across the county. Every one of the individuals visiting properties to collect data will be displaying an identification badge issued and signed by County Auditor William D. McFarland and will have an identifying sign on the side of their vehicle. During these property visits, the data collectors will be looking to verify or correct and update the information that is currently on record at the Auditor’s Office such as land topography, the number and size of buildings, construction quality and other items that are taken into account in the valuation of real property.

The data collector will attempt to speak with the owner or occupant for assistance in reviewing the information. If no one is present at the time of the visit, a door card will be left to inform the owner that their property was visited and the card may include a note if the data collector has questions about the property. Should the owner want the data collector to return in order to discuss their property, the card will contain a local phone number to call to schedule an appointment. While property owners are required to admit data collectors on their property, they are not required to admit them into their homes. That is strictly voluntary.

All of this activity is the ground work necessary to insure that each property record is as accurate as possible. In order for valuation determinations to be fair, consistent and equitable, this information needs to be collected and verified. The primary goal is to get the information right with the aim of the project to insure that each property owner pays only their fair share of property taxes.

After the property information is collected and verified, the appraisal company’s licensed and certified appraisers will provide overall data review and valuation. Final valuations will be based upon the data collected on each parcel as well as substantiated information on property sales, rental income data and other factors that would affect property value. The new values will be as of January 1, 2016 for taxes to be paid in 2017.

For more information, please contact the Auditor’s Office at 740-373-6623 x 263 or the Barry R. Ankney office at their local number 740-885-2035.