Voice of the consumer: How to appeal your property valuation

Katie Pelton
Katie Pelton(KKTV)
Published: May. 29, 2023 at 5:32 AM MDT|Updated: May. 30, 2023 at 11:32 AM MDT
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Our 11 News Call For Action team pens a weekly column for our news partner The Gazette. Previous columns can be found here.

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KKTV) - A lot of you may have questions about the property valuations that you received in the mail, so I sat down with the El Paso County assessor to find out more information about the valuations and how the appeal process works. The appraisals are done every two years, so the current valuations are actually based on the housing market last summer.

“[Appraisals are] done every [other] year, and that’s by statute. Every county in the state has to reappraise all their property,” said El Paso County Assessor Mark Flutcher. “It’s based on an appraisal date of June 30, 2022, and the 18 months prior to that for residential properties.”

The housing market has been up and down since the start of the pandemic. It seems like it’s cooled off a little this year, so I asked whether the county would do a reappraisal sooner than the two-year benchmark to account for the difference. In response, Flutcher told me they “have to stick to that time period, given by state statute.”

The county tells me this same type of thing happened during the last recession — before the housing market crashed.

“In 2009, we were looking at a strong market, prior to a crash, in our local real estate values. It wasn’t until 2011 that we started picking up that decline, and we actually lowered values in many areas in the county,” said Flutcher.

The county tells me values went up 44% for residential homes since the last appraisal in 2021. This is the highest gain in more than three decades. However, there are some factors that may lower your rates.

“There are factors that aren’t included in that estimate. If you’re a senior and have a homestead exemption, for instance,” said Flutcher. “There’s also a $15,000 reduction from a bill passed last year, with a possibility $50,000 reduction if voters pass Proposition HH in the next election.”

You do have the option to appeal your assessment with the County Assessor’s Office. I asked how often the rates can change from the appeals process, and Flutcher told me that, “On average, for most metro counties, [it ranges from] 40% to 50%.”

The Assessor’s Office said if you have concerns or disagree with your assessed value, you have until June 8 to appeal. You can appeal your property value online by visiting assessor.elpasoco.com.

“They can go to our website, look up property characteristics, and ensure we have the right characteristics on their home. From there, they can also appeal the [appraised] value. There’s a tool on [the site] called ‘Citizen Comper’ and they can map out their neighborhood and see what homes in their immediate area have sold for. The easiest way to appeal is online. However, you can call our office, [or] you can mail in the back of that notice-of-value form,” said Flutcher.

For more information about property valuations, go to KKTV.com and click on the “Find It” tab on the homepage.

Click here to read the original column on gazette.com.