By Linda Dillman
If you own property in Franklin County, a state mandated reappraisal could bring sticker shock with property values jumping anywhere from 20 to 70 percent.
“We’ve been working on this for a while,” Bethany Sanders, Franklin County Policy and Strategic Initiatives Director, told the Madison Township trustees at their Aug. 22 meeting. “We’re required to conduct a full appraisal every six years. This is an effort to accurately reflect property value changes in the current real estate market.
In order to update current values, data is collected from multiple sources, including local recent home sales, neighborhood data, and a visual exterior inspection of the condition of the property.
Mailers indicating reappraisal values were sent to property owners in August and an online service breaking down the appraisal for individual properties was initiated at the same time.
If a property owner contests the valuation and feels the data is inaccurate, they have options for a review either online or in person for 20 minute sessions held virtually or at 11 locations throughout the county.
A Know Your Home Value website can guide property owners through the process of reviewing property information, submitting documents showing evidence of an alternative valuation, and scheduling a property value review.
Before scheduling a review, property owners are urged to consider if the valuation is a price with which they could reasonably sell their property or is the data too high or too low; and what would a local real estate agent value the property for sale and is the property data on the auditor’s website accurate?
After the review period, final values are determined in October and set in December
“We cannot lower a value because you think the taxes will be too high,” said Sanders, who told trustees property values went up an average of 40 percent county wide.
The reappraisal process was not created to increase or decrease taxes. However, it may impact taxes, which are established at the ballot box through taxing districts based on voter approval. Property tax is calculated at 35 percent of property tax value and there are 14 different taxing districts in Madison Township.
“Most Franklin County property owners will see a property value increase,” said Sanders. “This is due to a perfect storm of factors driving up the fair market value.”
Increases in tax bills for 2024 will be issued in January and June.