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New value notices should be mailed to all taxpayers who own real property in Orange County March, 2021.
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Revaluation staff is continuing to track sales and leasing data in order to account for any effects the pandemic may have on property values. Individual tax values will reflect market conditions, including those resulting from the pandemic, that exist on January 1, 2021. Currently the data shows that overall, homes are continuing to sell at the same rate and sales prices are steady and rising. This information indicates that the pandemic has not negatively impacted home values. Information on sales in your area can be reviewed at our COMPER website.
The tax rate is selected by the County Commissioners based on the budgetary needs for the coming year. When the tax rate is applied to the new individual tax values it produces individual tax amounts that when combined provide the needed revenue to fund the County’s budget. As in any revaluation year, individual property values may be higher or lower, and the owners may receive higher or lower tax bills than they received the previous year. In a revaluation year the rate is carefully considered in order to minimize the impact that the updated values may have on an individual’s tax bill, and that is especially so for 2021 due to the pandemic.
Revaluation is a process by which all property tax assessments within a taxing jurisdiction (Orange County) are reassessed to their market value as of a specific revaluation date. It also is sometimes called a reappraisal or mass appraisal. The tax office, in this process, reassesses all real property (land, buildings and other improvements to the land) as of the revaluation date.
Arms-length market sales are used to estimate new tax assessments during this process as well as other market data such as income/expense information and market building cost information. This updated tax assessment is effective, generally, until the next countywide revaluation. Orange County’s next planned revaluation date is January 01, 2021, and tax assessments should reflect market value as of that date once the revaluation is completed.
The State of North Carolina requires counties to conduct a revaluation at least once every eight years (NCGS 105 - 286a). Its purpose is to redistribute the tax burden based on current market data. As time elapses between revaluations, properties may increase or decrease in market value at different rates. The State of North Carolina charges counties with assessing property based on current market data as of each revaluation date.
Most likely, yes. However, not all property values will change at the same percentage. Market values may have increased or decreased more for some neighborhoods and property types than for others. One purpose of a revaluation is to ensure assessed values reflect changes that have occurred in the marketplace since the last countywide revaluation.
North Carolina General Statute 105 - 283 requires counties to assess all property, both real and personal property, at its true value in money. True value shall be interpreted as meaning market value. NCGS 105 - 284 establishes a uniform assessment standard. This standard in effect penalizes counties if they are not assessing property at market value as of the date of last revaluation.
Typical countywide revaluations take between 18 - 24 months to complete. Staff of the Orange County Tax Office has been reviewing market sales, compiling studies and maintaining a list of current tax base inventory during this revaluation effective, January 01, 2021. Tax office appraisers have begun reviewing property data for the 2021 revaluation. The resulting values will be effective January 01, 2021. Real property tax bills mailed in July, 2021 will reflect the new revaluation tax assessment.
The Orange County Tax Office is conducting this revaluation primarily “in-house.” This means our own personnel in the tax office will be evaluating properties along with current market data and establishing new tax assessments. Orange County will be working with specialized appraisal consultants to obtain additional data otherwise unavailable to staff.
Although the value of your property does affect your share of taxes, the actual amount you pay is determined by budgetary needs of the jurisdictions in which your property is located (county, city, fire districts, etc.). Governing boards of these taxing units decide what services the jurisdiction will provide in the coming year and how much money the jurisdiction will need to provide these services. A tax rate is then adopted to generate the necessary tax dollars.
Various tools are used to extract data from the market. Examples include:
The best source for establishing residential market values is arms-length sales of reasonably comparable properties. Such properties are similar in location, age, style, condition and other features that may have an effect on market value.
Instructions for appeal will be included with your new value notice. The first appeal level is an informal hearing with an Orange County Tax Office appraiser. Orange County will make personnel available to hold informal hearings with the property owner. During this informal session, the property record card is reviewed and you may request an actual site visit to your property. North Carolina General Statutes put the burden of proof on the property owner to show that a tax assessment is inaccurate.
Keep in mind that the informal review will be to ensure your property is assessed at 100% of its fair market value as of the revaluation date, January 01, 2021. Therefore, an informal appeal could result in an increase, decrease or no change in assessment. A change in assessment will be considered only if the owner can demonstrate that the assessed value is more or less than market value as of January 01, 2021, or that it is inconsistent with assessments of similar properties. Assessments cannot be appealed based on
The tax office will send results of informal appeals via mail. The second level of appeal is to the Orange County Board of Equalization and Review. North Carolina then has a State Property Tax Commission that hears advanced appeals.