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Many homeowners to receive reassessment notices

About 131,000 Philadelphia homeowners will be receiving reassessment notices from the city’s Office of Property Assessment for Tax Year 2016.

Mayor Michael Nutter’s communications office announced the mailings on April 15 without specifying the neighborhoods that will be affected most by the property value adjustments. More than half of the affected property owners will see a reduction in tax responsibility for 2016.

“Almost 120,000 notices are as a result of OPA’s yearly reassessment process to improve and maintain property assessments,” the mayor’s office said in a printed news release. “The OPA examined properties in certain neighborhoods in the city where values were outside the range of accuracy for assessment purposes, and, using its modeling and analytical tools, the OPA reassessed properties in those neighborhoods.”

Almost 67,000 properties will have lower assessments and taxes than last year while more than 58,000 will have higher assessments and taxes. Another 700 properties “were examined but did not see changes in market value” but “may have other changes in their property characteristics or taxable status,” the mayor’s statement read.

An additional 5,000 notices result from changes in property type, new construction, renovation, demolition or other changes.

The mayor’s office did not disclose if assessors conducted on-site inspections or if the reassessments are based solely on data and computer modeling. The OPA page on www.phila.gov states that in general, assessors use information about the size, age, location, condition and use to determine the value of a property.

“For residential properties, the OPA analyzes recent sales of similar properties to set the value, making adjustments for differences in the characteristics in the homes that sold and your property,” the city website states.

Property reassessment mailings contain information about appealing the new assessment, including instructions on how to file a “first level review” and how to file a “formal review” with the Board of Revision of Taxes. The deadline for filing for a first level review is May 26. The formal review filing deadline is Oct. 5.

The mailings will also contain information about how local tax dollars factor into the city and School District of Philadelphia budgets. Visit www.phila.gov/opa or call 215–686–9200 for information. ••

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