The Town of West Greenwich is undergoing a statistical revaluation. Northeast Revaluation from Warwick, RI has been contracted for the 2013 reval. Not all homes will be inspected. Property owners will receive an assessment letter in the spring of 2014 indicating their new assessment as of 12/31/2013. This new value will be the taxable value for the next 3 years. The assessment letter will explain how to set up an informal hearing to discuss your valuation.
Below is a list of the most frequently asked questions regarding a revaluation.
1. What is a revaluation?
2. What is market value and who determines my property value?
3. What happens during a revaluation?
4. Will a revaluation increase taxes?
5. What is an informal hearing?
6. If I still disagree with my assessment after the informal hearing, what then?
7. When will the new assessments take place?
- What is a revaluation?
A revaluation is a tax equalization program that involves the reappraisal of all taxable property within a municipality. Revaluations are required in order to assure that all property owners are paying only their fair share of the municipal tax burden.
The real estate market is constantly changing and inequities develop over time. The goal of a revaluation project is to determine the market value of all properties as of a specific date in order to correct past inequities. The revaluation process does not raise any additional revenue for a municipality.
- What is market value and who determines my property value?
Market value is determined by people, by the activity in the real estate market and by the general economy. Qualified appraisers will be used to analyze recent sales and estimate the value o fall taxable property within the municipality. Qualified sales will be adjusted to reflect the characteristics of your property by the appraiser in order to generate an estimate of value.
- What happens during a revaluation?
During a full revaluation, a physical inspection of both the interior and exterior of each property is conducted where building dimensions and characteristics are noted. This is the data collection phase of the project. Each data collector carries an identification badge issued by the West Greenwich Police Department.
While the data collection phase is in progress, the revaluation company is also studying the sales in order to determine where the actual increases and decreases in value are occurring. This allows the appraisers to establish parameters to estimate the value of property that has not yet been sold. The appraisers then review the collected data and apply the determining factors of the sales analysis to determine the value of each property.
Each property owner received an individual notice of the new assessment. All property owners are given the opportunity to discuss their values, questions and concerns with the appraisal staff at scheduled times. Should an inspection or re-valuation be required, the appraiser will make that determination and any changes that result will be forwarded to the property owner.
- Will a revaluation increase taxes?
The tax rate will not be determined until after the completion of the revaluation project and the municipality's budget process. It is impossible to forecast the effect on your tax bill until both the revaluation and the budget process have been completed. It is important to keep in mind that the intent of the revaluation is to equalize the tax burden among the taxpayers, not to raise taxes.
- What is an informal hearing?
Towards the end of the revaluation process, every homeowner will receive a notice of proposed valuation based on the analysis performed. If a homeowner has a question or concern regarding the proposed valuation, they are to call the revaluation company to set a date and time to meet with a representative from the company here at the Town Hall. The hearing is not to discuss taxes. It is strictly meant to answer questions and concerns the property owner has on the new valuation.
- If I still disagree with my assessment after the informal hearing, what then?
If any property owner believes the assessment on their property is in excess of market value, they may appeal to the Tax Assessor. After the Assessor has rendered her decision, if the property owner is still unsatisfied with the result, they may appeal to the Assessment Board of Review. Finally, if once the Assessment Board of Review renders their decision and the property owner is still aggrieved, they may appeal to the Superior Court for the judicial district in which the Town is located.
- When will the new assessments take place?
The new assessments will be based on the market value of your property as of December 31, 2013. The first tax bill reflecting the new assessment is expected to be issued in July 2014.