Assessors play a crucial role in local governments who need to collect and keep accurate property tax data.
An assessor is a local government official whose primary responsibility is to determine real estate values for taxation purposes. Assessors compute base values and use them to calculate future property taxes owed by local property owners. Calculating the appropriate figures is essential to keeping a local economy healthy. The assessor is responsible for estimating all real property values that lie within the given town, city, or township boundary lines.
Discover How an Assessor Derives Property Values
Assessors use one of three methods to assess appropriate property values.
● The sales evaluation – The assessor uses a sales transaction history of similar properties. Properties that are bought or sold under stress do not get used in making this type of assessment.
● The cost method – The cost method uses replacement calculation to derives the current cost of replacing the existing structure based on today’s labor and material pricing.
● The income method – When using the income method, the assessor determines the income potential if used solely as a rental property.
Assessors may decide to use one or all three of these methods to determine property value, which they will then multiply by the assessment rate to come up with the final assessed value.
It helps homeowners when an assessor is an expert in the local real estate market, so determining values is a combination of using strict formulas and direct experience. These days, nearly all assessors use Computer Assisted Mass Appraisal (CAMA) techniques to calculate estimates and sales values simultaneously for large numbers of properties.
What Are the Type of Property Assessed?
Assessors cover the entire gamut of personal property.
The broad definition of real property is that it includes land with a permanently attached structure.
These structures include homes, office buildings, gas stations, motels, hotels, apartment buildings, mobile homes, restaurants, and factories. As this information implies, assessors cover much ground and are integral to valuating every community or city.
Do Assessors Need Certification?
Although there are no federal certification requirements for property assessors, some states have them. People interested in becoming an assessor in these areas may require training and certification before making assessments.
Do Property Assessors Have Other Duties?
Assessors perform a broad range of administrative duties, like inspecting construction sites and overseeing improvements to structures. When working on projects like this, they get an up-to-date and accurate assessment for the structure, including the upgrades.
The assessors maintain responsibility for approving and recording all property tax exemptions. There are quite a few of these including business, agricultural, and veteran’s exemption programs, as well as School Tax Relief (STAR.)
Some states may also expect assessors to perform duties like answering property owner grievances or going to court to justify valuations. With a deep understanding of local property values, they play a crucial role in establishing the tax basis.
Few people will have more expertise in real property values for a given area for this reason. Assessors gain practical experience through their work and apply the scientific principles of their profession to make ideal assessments.