Douglas County homes saw less of an increase in their values during the most recent reappraisal period than in the recent past, according to the county assessor. Residential reappraisal notices, …
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Douglas County homes saw less of an increase in their values during the most recent reappraisal period than in the recent past, according to the county assessor.
Residential reappraisal notices, which were mailed to property owners beginning May 3, reflect a median increase of 8% for single-family homes throughout the county. That's down from 2019, when those valuations rose by 14.5%. In 2017, there was an increase of nearly 20%, said Lisa Frizell, the county assessor.
That median property value for single-family homes is now $519,000, according to a press release from the county.
Reappraisals occur every two years and are based on comparable sale prices in the area of the property. To determine homes' new valuations, the assessor's office looks only at sales that occurred during the “study period,” which for this valuation was from July 1, 2018 to June 30, 2020.
The trend in Douglas County runs parallel to what was found across the metro area, where value increases ranged from 6% to 11% percent, according to a press release from Denver metro area assessors.
Since that period ended, the county's residential values have begun appreciating at a higher rate. In some areas, there has been a 20% increase since the study period, Frizell said.
That increase won't be reflected in valuations until 2023, unless there is a change in the market before then.
“We would have to see a housing bubble burst not to see this” Frizell said.
These valuations, along with an assessment rate set by the state and any mill levies on the property, are used to determine property taxes.
Those interested in challenging their valuation can do so by visiting douglas.co.us/assessor and selecting “file an appeal” under “online services.” Property owners can also use the site to search for their home's valuation, learn about past valuations and research comparable home appraisals and sales.
“We would be happy to look at it,” Frizell said of valuation appeals.
Attached housing, such as condominiums and townhomes, saw a median value increase of 5% in the county, Frizell said.
“Unlike the last several reappraisals, our condominiums and townhomes saw a smaller appreciation in value compared to single-family detached homes,” Frizell said, according to the county press release.
Frizell also participated in a recent conference of metro area assessors where they researched how COVID-19 impacted commercial property valuations.
“In my 23 years working in the Douglas County Assessor's Office, I have never experienced a partnership and effort such as we achieved,” Frizell said.
The project brought together assessors from 12 counties to analyze the impacts of the pandemic on six types of real estate, consisting of office, retail, lodging, warehouses, apartments and condominiums.
“While some small decrease in residential transactions was observed after March 2020, commercial real estate transactions fundamentally ceased to occur,” according to the release from the metro area assessors.
They found that generally, warehouse property values fared well during that period, Frizell said. Office spaces remained mostly flat, except in downtown Denver where there was a “mass exodus,” she said. Lodging properties experienced the largest decreases in value, according to the press release from assessors.
The project “was born out of necessity, but was also a shining example of how government can lead with innovation and citizen focus,” Frizell said. “This was 100% about making sure we do the right thing by our commercial property owners and proactively seeking solutions to complex problems that, at face value, we had little experience with.”
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