Property Tax 2012

Property Tax Info 2012
The North Briarcliff Civic Association provides the following items for informational purposes only. The comments and suggestions which are made by individual persons are neither endorsed nor disapproved by the NBCA and its Board. The NBCA is a not-for-profit, non-political Internal Revenue Code Section 501 (C) (4) civic association which CAN NOT and DOES NOT provide legal advice.

We encourage all our residents to gain as much information as possible about the assessment and appeals process in order to make a decision that works for them. Further updates may occur in the mass media as this issue develops, so check this website, as well as the local newspaper and TV station reports.

And please reach out to all your neighbors to ensure that they are informed about these developments, too.

Web Link Document Description

http://goo.gl/k7SAo Instructions for Filing and Appeal Online

PDF Link Hawthorne Elementary School District Home Sales

PDF Link Henderson Middle School District Home Sales

http://goo.gl/w5z7e Area Survey of 2012 Assessment Increases/Decreases/Freezes
PDF Link        Area Subdivisions to Be Discussed by Board of Tax Assessors June 7, 2012

http://goo.gl/v9R35 Article from “The Patch” Concerning Assessment Appeals

PDF Link Letter from District 2 Commissioner Jeff Rader Concerning Assessments

PDF Link Letter from Chief Assessor Calvin Hicks to an NBCA Area Resident

PDF Link Letter from NBCA Area Resident with Tips for Filing an Appeal

PDF Link Comments from a Resident of Randolph Estates Subdivision

PDF Link Community Blog Established by Harrison Rogers Concerning Assessments

GENERAL INFORMATION:
The North Briarcliff Civic Association is responding to your inquiry regarding the recent DeKalb County 2012 Annual Notice of Assessment received by all our community’s homeowners. The data below is provided for your information. The NBCA is a not-for-profit, non-political Internal Revenue Code Section 501 (C) (4) civic association which CAN NOT and DOES NOT provide legal advice. Only YOU can decide what course of action is best for you. However, we are glad to respond to your concerns, and urge you to view all the data provided on our website at http://northbriarcliff.org/propertytax2012.

ALL residents, whether or not they are NBCA members, are welcome to use any resources on the NBCA’s website. Remember, comments and suggestions in some of these materials are made by individuals, and are neither endorsed nor disapproved by the NBCA. Again, you have to decide what makes sense for you.

We encourage all residents to learn as much as possible about the assessment and appeals process BEFORE making a decision to appeal. Further developments about this issue will appear in the media, so check our website, as well as local newspaper and TV reports. And please, reach out to ALL your neighbors to ensure that they are informed about these developments, too.
ASSESSMENT AND APPEALS INFORMATION:
Recently, numerous residents have contacted NBCA Board members by e-mail and telephone to express concerns and ask questions about their 2012 DeKalb County Notice of Assessment. We have prepared the following response and information for the use of ALL our community’s residents, regardless of whether they are Association members.

Georgia law is clear that appealing a residential property tax assessment is an individual matter, and the responsibility of the individual homeowner. Thus, group litigation or class actions are difficult to mount, and the views of organizations, such as the NBCA which is a non-profit and non-political entity, are not relevant to the County. However, the Association offers a great deal of information for all residents, including recent sales information. We invite you to share your assessment information on an area-wide spreadsheet.

Go to the NBCA website at http://northbriarcliff.org/propertytax2012 to learn much more. You can easily link to various exhibits and other information which will be of interest to you. A former Board member, realtor Harrison Rogers, has created a spreadsheet for persons to enter some of their assessment data to help other residents. Please consider entering your property assessment information so that others in our area who are planning appeals can review what is going on in more detail. The data available in this spreadsheet is in public records and will not breach your privacy. We hope this will help our neighbors, and we thank Mr. Rogers for creating this. Again, your participation is strictly voluntarily. The link to this spreadsheet is at our website, cited above.

For information on DeKalb County’s residential assessment appeals process, the following website was listed on all County assessment notices as a source.: https://etax.dor.ga.gov/PTD/adm/taxguide/appeals/aspx. Appeal forms are available online at http://web.co.dekalb.ga.us/PropertyAppraisal/appeal.html, also according to the County’s letter. While it’s not a completely updated or simple website, you can look up a list of addresses on a street by going to http://web.co.dekalb.ga.us/PropertyAppraisal/realSearch.asp. Note that the County does NOT enter residential real estate transactions on a real time basis, so speaking to neighbors and area realtors should be considered. FYI, some residents have reported that some of the county’s websites are not functioning well. Thus, we hope you’ll look at the NBCA’s website which includes some valuable information, including home sales data.

You have 45 days from the date printed on your notice to file an appeal. Please remember that the County’s specific definition of “Fair Market Value” in your Notice of Assessment (the value the County assigned to your property) is NOT necessarily the same concept that realtors or homeowners mean when discussing a home’s “fair market value.” Members of the public think of “fair market value” as what a willing buyer and willing seller agree to, without duress, at a recent point in time. The County’s “Fair Market Value” is a formula that may or may not reflect market realities. It’s a confusing distinction. However, recent sales of similar homes in your immediate area are worth mentioning, even though it may appear that the County did not consider this data when they used their own formula to determine your home’s “Fair Market Value” for purposes of tax assessment. You are ultimately assessed or taxed on 40% of what the County assesses your property to be.

This is a true “hot button” issue right now. Newspaper and TV reporters have interviewed persons in our area. You can call April Hunt at the AJC at 404-526-7740, or John Shirek at 11Alive News 404-891-1611 with comments.

Our website lists subdivisions which were to be discussed at a June 7, 2012 Board of Tax Assessors meeting, and gives recent sales information on homes in the Hawthorne Elementary School and Henderson Middle School Districts. We are very grateful to area realtor Sandi Harsh for providing such a useful tool for our community. We thank Ms. Harsh for sharing this resource with the NBCA.

You may wish to use the services of a professionally licensed appraiser or attorney, or other service to help you dispute this matter. All of these entities charge fees, so compare rates and references. No business can guarantee a certain result for you. Most firms charge a percentage of any reduction received or a flat fee. Ask how it’s done before you sign any agreement, and be sure YOU follow up with your representative before your deadline runs out

In summary, to preserve your right to contest the valuation placed on your home by DeKalb County, you MUST appeal timely under the procedures outlined on BOTH sides of your assessment letter. You MUST include your Access Code listed in the lower right corner of your letter. You also need the Access Code to use some County websites. All residential properties have a Parcel I.D. Number, too. It is listed in the box of information in the middle of the front page. Whether you choose to appeal, and whether you choose to handle this matter on your own or with outside help, we urge you to go to our website, review its information and follow the links.

EVENT INFORMATION:
Membership in the NBCA is VOLUNTARY, and its Board members are VOLUNTEERS. In January 2012, your Association offered two FREE programs called “Homeowners 101”, which covered area property valuations and the appraisal/assessment processes. Please read the FREE quarterly NBCA newsletter and postcards, which tell you about programs planned for EVERYONE in our community. Please consider becoming a member when you receive your newly formatted newsletter in the next 10 days.
Come to our FREE Ice Cream Social, Saturday, June 23, from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m. at Hawthorne Elementary School. That would be an excellent time to talk to other neighbors and our Board members about neighborhood issues. Check the website regularly for more updates.