(COLORADO SPRINGS) — Hundreds of people in Colorado Springs are stressing out over their new property evaluations – some homeowners are furious because the value of their homes has more than doubled, which means their property taxes will reflect that.
These property valuations are issued by the El Paso County Assessor’s Office every other year. Local realtors said the reaction from homeowners is accurate, with these property valuations coming out to be much higher than anything they have seen in recent years.
The property valuations released last week show the worth of some homes going up by hundreds of thousands of dollars. Facebook is filled with hundreds of comments from homeowners, some saying they are shocked and others saying they are furious about the increase in property taxes reflected in these valuations.
“I think the highest that I’ve seen is about $1,500 increase annually over what their property taxes were for the previous tax year,” said Joshua Bernhard, a local real estate agent at 8Z Real Estate, who has been helping people work through these new valuations.
These property taxes are set to show up in next year’s tax cycle.
Many homeowners are confused, because when they look at housing websites like Zillow, the current market price of their house does not reflect these valuations. The El Paso County Assessor’s office says that’s because it was required to assess the market by June 30, 2022, which at that point, was a peak real estate market.
“Leading up to that June 30th of 2022… interest rates were at all-time lows… and the market experienced a temporary exuberance, maybe detached from rationality a little bit,” said Matthew Arvidson, the El Paso County Chief Deputy Assessor.
Officials with the County Assessor’s office are now encouraging homeowners to appeal these valuations if they don’t feel that it is right.
Homeowners can appeal through the physical form that is on the back of their valuation notice, through the phone, or online. On the El Paso County Assessor’s website homepage, through the ‘Parcel Search Page’ button, homeowners can then type in their address or parcel number and can appeal their specific valuation.
“The appeal process is actually really simple… All that I’m doing for people is just offering to sit down with them… and see, ‘okay, well, if the assessor says that your house is worth this amount, can we support that with the other houses that have sold in the neighborhood’?” said Bernhard.
The deadline to appeal these valuations is June 8. The County Assessor’s Office said that they have already received double the amount of appeals than they normally would on a reappraisal year.
While this year’s valuation came as a huge shock to homeowners, experts say, to get used it.
“There’s a lot of people moving into Colorado Springs… The demand is still pretty high here in town, and that’s not something that I see alleviating any time in the near future,” said Bernhard.