March 28, 2017

Property Assessment

I have changes to my property….

You have several options, if you have the simple addition or removal of a building or remodel to your  property you can fill out our online building notification form.  For more complex questions or if you prefer to speak to a live person contact our office at 605-745-5136. The assessors will arrange a time to view the changes, generally during fall field work (September to November).

My value is too high!….

If you feel that your property has been over (or under) assessed you can contact the assessors to view the property for additional issues.  Many properties are assessed based on their exterior and questions answered by the homeowner.  If there are internal issues to the structure, allowing the assessors entrance can help them correctly value your property.    If your property does not have additional issues but you still believe it to be over valued you can contact the Director of Equalization’s office to provide comparable sales (structures must be valued between 85-100% of market value).  The only time to appeal your value is in the month following you assessment notice being sent (March 1st).  You may speak to the assessors at any time of the year about your value but only in the appeal time frame can you appeal beyond the assessors.

My taxes are too high!…

Taxes have several factors.  The first that property owners usually look at is their assessment value. Changes in your assessment value can affect your taxes but so can changes in the state factor or mill levy.  Determining which of these three elements has changed is the first step.

The first question: Is your property valued for approximately what you would sell it for?  If the value is over what you believe you could sell it for on the open market contact the Department of Equalization to have this reviewed.

The second question: Is your property correctly classed?  There is a significant tax difference between Ag and Non-Ag property.  There is also a difference between the tax mill for homes that are owner occupied versus rentals/2nd homes (about a 25% tax reduction).  There is no difference between the mill levy for residential and commercial property.

The third question: Do you qualify for a tax reduction program?  There are several programs for veterans, the elderly, or disabled individuals.  There are also programs for new structures or renovations to commercial or agricultural structures.  Check out the list of tax reduction programs here.

If none of the above apply to you then the only avenue for lower taxes is to decrease the mill levy.  Mill levies are decided based on the budgets needed by various county organizations: fire departments, ambulance, school districts, county government offices, and other groups. To lower the mill levy one or more of these organizations would need to make budget cuts.  (Mill levies also decrease when there is an increase in the value base, if for example if 50 new families were to move to a tax district and each build a new house; the number of persons in that tax district who were paying for services would increase which means that everyone could pay a smaller portion.)

 

Back to Main DOE Page

Department of Equalization
(605)-745-5136
freq@gwtc.net