2019 Revaluation Project - Revalue Portland!
Revaluations are commonly undertaken every 10 years or when a community falls below assessing standards set by Maine law. During a revaluation, all property in the municipality is reviewed and assessments are adjusted to their fair market value.
The City of Portland is currently conducting a city-wide revaluation of all real property. New values will take effect for the 4/1/2020 assessment date and will be reflected in the tax bills issued for FY21, mailed in August 2020. In order to ensure that the City’s tax burden is shared fairly among all property owners, it’s necessary to update our descriptions and valuations of properties throughout the City.
On average, Portland’s current valuations are approximately 76% of market value. Our goal upon completion of the revaluation is to get property assessments back to the State mandated 100% of market value standard. Portland’s last revaluation was completed in 2004 and many properties have changed significantly since then. That creates the potential that some Portland properties are either over-assessed or under-assessed, relative to others. The goal in the revaluation is to improve the fairness of our property values so that all Portland taxpayers are treated similarly.
The appraisal firm of Tyler Technologies CLT Appraisal Services has been hired by the City of Portland to complete the revaluation project. Tyler's Appraisal and Tax division will be working with the Assessor’s Office to make the process a successful one. The following is a general outline and explanation of each phase of the project.
There are five major phases to a municipal revaluation: Data Collection, Market Analysis, Valuation, Field Review and Informal Hearings.
PHASE 1: DATA COLLECTION
The first phase, Data Collection, will begin March 2019 and last for approximately 7-8 months. During this phase, data collectors, also known as “Listers," visit parcels to inspect and verify the measurements of the exterior of each building. These Listers note the building’s location, size, age, quality of construction, improvements, topography, utilities, zoning restrictions, if any, and numerous other characteristics. Listers will also be taking photographs of the exterior of each property as they visit them. These photos are added to the Assessor’s database and will be printed on the property record card.
All field representatives will carry identification cards and have their cars listed with both the Assessor’s Office and the Police Department.
PHASE 2: MARKET ANALYSIS
A variety of resources are used to analyze the real estate market. While the physical data is being collected by field listers, appraisal personnel will be analyzing recent sales that took place over the last two to three years to determine which market factors influenced property values. Once all the data is collected and reviewed for accuracy, the appraiser will determine land values and set neighborhood site indexes that indicate the market desirability of various Portland neighborhoods.
PHASE 3: VALUATION
Valuation is done using one or more of the three recognized methods: Sales Comparison, Cost and Income approaches to value. During this phase, individual characteristics of buildings are analyzed using information gathered in phases 1 and 2.
The Sales Comparison or Market approach is the most widely used, particularly for residential properties. This approach to property valuation uses information on recent open-market, arm's-length sale prices. Differences in the characteristics of recently sold properties - use, size, location, quality of buildings, and so on - have an influence on prices. The Sales Comparison uses similar, comparable properties to determine a fair market value.
The Cost Approach to property valuation is a formula that uses the replacement or reproduction cost of improvements, less accrued depreciation. This is then added to the land value to determine the total property value.
The Income Approach to property valuation involves estimating the future income stream of the property and applying a capitalization rate to project that income stream to a present value.
PHASE 4: FIELD REVIEW
Field Review is the method of checking and re-checking both the values that have been determined and the data that has been collected. During this review, properties are viewed in the field by experienced appraisers and the City’s Assessor, who double check uniformity and accuracy of information.
PHASE 5: INFORMAL HEARINGS
Once the Field Review is completed, a Notice of New Values and an initial revised property record card will be mailed to each property owner. Anyone with questions concerning the revaluation process or about the data collected on their property has an opportunity to meet with a member of Tyler's staff to discuss their property value and correct any errors found in the data collection or property valuation process.
Once the informal hearings have been completed, the City Assessor will commit the new values and tax bills will be sent out in August of 2020 that reflect the Fiscal Year 2021 property valuations.
Whether the revaluation affects your property’s valuation or tax bill will depend on how accurate our current assessment is for your property. Some taxpayers may see a decrease in their tax bill, others may see a increase, while others may see their tax bill remain about the same.
The best way to ensure that your property is correctly valued, and that Portland’s tax burden is fairly distributed, is to ensure our information on your property is as accurate as possible. Please contact the Assessor’s Office if you have any questions or concerns about the process as we proceed.
Thank you very much for your help!
For more information on revaluation, and answers to common questions about the process, please review some of the information below.