If you own a metro Phoenix home, your latest property valuation is ready.
It will soon arrive via mail or email, and most likely you will see an increase from last year.
Overall, the value of single-family homes climbed almost 7.2 percent and condominium values climbed almost 10.5 percent last year, according to the Maricopa County Assessor. Both are pretty close to increases for 2016.
This valuation report will determine how much you pay in taxes, but not this year.
And don’t be too concerned when you look at the numbers on the government form because its likely your house is worth more.
Confusing? Arizona has one of the most convoluted property tax systems in the U.S.
The new valuations will help determine property taxes you pay in 2019. That’s because there’s an 18-month delay in the system to give people time to appeal.
Property owners have 60 days to appeal if they think their value is too low or high, said Maricopa County Assessor Paul Petersen.
Homeowners unhappy with their valuations can start the appeal process online.
Despite last year’s increase, the home valuations still seem low, but that’s on purpose.
The assessor generally values houses 10-20 percent below market value to cut down on appeals and any potential to inflate values.
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Your full-cash value on the report should be closest to what your home is actually worth.
The Assessor’s Office research shows the median full-cash value for a Valley home was $214,000 last year. The median sales price for the year was closer to $240,000.
The limited-cash value, which is almost always lower, is used for figuring out your taxes.
And due to Prop. 117, passed by voters in 2012, increases to your house’s limited-cash value are capped at 5 percent a year.
That will be decided this summer when thousands of Valley taxing jurisdictions such as school, libraries, fire departments, cities and Maricopa County decide what they need from property owners to operate.
Though it would make sense for ups and downs in property assessments to correspond with taxes, that’s not the case in Arizona.
Last year, taxing jurisdictions asked for about a 5 percent increase from property taxes, in addition to the extra money already expected from higher values.
Homeowners tax bills can vary wildly depending on whether their school districts have overrides for bonds or if they are in a special tax district.
Property bills come out in September.
And there’s no appealing those taxes.