Wake County residents seem far happier with their new property values than they were the last time the county government appraised their homes in 2008.
The new values for all 360,000 county properties, announced in December, form the basis of how much owners pay in property taxes.
The county so far has received 8,215 appeals, down about 70 percent from the 27,500 appeals it received in 2008. The appeal rate is 2.2 percent, down from 8.5 percent eight years ago.
“I’m a little surprised. I thought we’d have more than 8,000,” said Marcus Kinrade, Wake County revenue director. “I think we’ve seen a majority of the appeals (that will be filed).”
More than 50 percent of the appeals filed in 2008 resulted in a change in value, Kinrade said. The county has considered a little more than 1,100 of this year’s appeals and adjusted the value of more than 600 properties, resulting in a slightly higher rate of change to date, about 54 percent.
One of those changed was the property at 615 West Hargett Street, which is owned by Raleigh Land Company and occupied by Oak City Coffee Roasters.
Wake in December valued the property at $421,600 – up from $248,500 in 2008. Property owner Jeb Jeutter appealed, and Wake reduced the value to about $243,300.
“I had an (independent) appraisal that was less than 30 days old,” Jeutter said, noting that the independent appraiser’s review was more comprehensive than the county’s.
Wake will accept appeals until May 18, but it encouraged property owners to appeal within 30 days of receiving their appraisal notice.
Of the total number of appeals, property owners have filed 5,839 residential appeals, down from about 23,500 in 2008. Meanwhile commercial property owners have filed 1,186 appeals, down from about 4,000 eight years ago. The remaining appeals are for vacant or other types of land.
The county government undergoes the revaluation process every eight years under state law, and property owners have the right to appeal the new value. Wake County staff and commissioners predicted there would be fewer appeals this year because the appeal rate was higher than usual in 2008.
Wake’s 2008 assessment captured eight years of a real estate boom just before the housing market crashed, resulting in an average residential property value increase of 38 percent. Commercial properties that year rose in value an average of 49 percent.
Appraisers this year found that Wake’s residential property values mostly remained at 2008 levels, while the county’s commercial properties increased in value by an average of 19 percent.
Despite less dramatic value adjustments, Wake officials expected more pushback than they’ve received so far.
More than 3,000 appeals are from Raleigh, which experienced the largest increase in commercial property values among all Wake municipalities. Commercial properties across the city increased by an average of 23 percent.
The largest value spikes – for residential and commercial properties – happened in downtown Raleigh.
Properties in the Hillsborough Street corridor tax district rose an average of 69 percent, while those just west and south of downtown increased similarly.
Wake valued the Boulted Bread bakery property on South Street at $276,300, up from $116,500 in 2008. The Boylan Bridge Brewpub, a 13,500 square-foot building on .4 acres that overlooks downtown Raleigh, now sits on property that’s worth $1.07 million – up from $566,000 in 2008.
Apartments and hotels, specifically, experienced the biggest value spikes countywide. Apartment values rose an average of 54 percent across the county, while hotels increased an average of 22 percent.
Perhaps the most unusual aspect of this reappraisal, Kinrade said, is the number of property owners asking the county to give them higher values. More than 500 property owners are asking for higher values, according to data provided by his office.
Homes valued at $400,000 or less weren’t as likely to have recovered from the recession.
“It’s not something we normally get,” Kinrade said of the appeals for higher values. “It’s an interesting experience for us.”
Property owners in Cary submitted 1,382 appeals, the second most of all Wake municipalities. There, values rose an average of 4 percent for residential properties and 15 percent for commercial properties.
Appeal numbers for Apex and Morrisville, meanwhile, are relatively low considering the jump in property values there.
For more information
To review Wake County property appraisal values or appeal the county’s assessment of your property, go online to https://services.wakegov.com/taxportal or call Wake’s revenue department at 919-857-3800.