Anatomy of a real estate appraisal: How is your property’s value determined?

How is your property’s value determined?

By Terry Habermehl - Clinton County Auditor

I have recently received a number of questions about how real estate values are determined for tax purposes.

My role as your county auditor is fairly unusual, as I have two bosses: the people of Clinton County who elected me, and the state tax commissioner. While my top priority is always serving the citizens of this great county, the state tax commissioner mandates many of my actions related to taxation. Valuing real estate is one such duty.

Ohio law requires that I update the value of every property in Clinton County at least once every six years. The Ohio Revised Code, the Ohio Administrative Code, as well as mandates from the state tax commissioner all play a vital role in this process.

For valuation purposes, the state typically mandates a target increase that is reflective of the valid real estate sales that took place in the county over the last three years. Due to the previous economic downturn, as well as the current recovery, we have seen the pendulum swing in property values over the last decade.

How is a property appraised for tax purposes?

The appraisal company starts by looking at each property — comparing its size, features, and condition to the data that is contained in county auditor’s property records. Discrepancies are resolved, and records are updated as necessary.

The analysis of all valid real estate sales is the linchpin to the entire process and a large contributing factor to the overall value placed on each property.

Those areas of the county that have had a large number of real estate sales above market value and/or new houses built will tend to see their values increase more than average while the opposite is true for those areas with fewer sales or sales that come in below market value.

For example, we have seen many more sales in the Kelly Drive and Lakewood subdivision areas in Wilmington as well as areas in Union, Adams and Chester townships, and those sales have supported a larger value increase in those areas.

On the other hand, Lees Creek and Wayne Township have not seen much activity, and their values are flat to slightly lower. One thing to keep in mind with this sales data is that we are looking at three years’ worth of actual real estate sales that are now updating property values that have remained flat since 2008.

If you have any questions regarding your property value or the appraisal process, please call my office at 937-382-2250 or visit us at 46 S. South St., Suite 130 in Wilmington, Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from 8 a.m.-4 p.m., or Wednesday from 8 a.m.-3 p.m.
How is your property’s value determined?

By Terry Habermehl

Clinton County Auditor