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Franklin County Property Owners Contest Updated Valuations

Franklin County property owners recently received updated appraisal values. And a number of homeowners already have begun to contest the changes. Rather than go from property to property, this year’s proposed re-appraisals are a result of neighborhood home sales surveys. Franklin County Auditor Clarence Mingo said the values are revised from 2011 values. “This way property owners have an updated value and better knowledge as to how the market is affecting their property," Mingo said. Property owners have a chance to contest the new valuations at informal review sessions. Bexley resident Pat Kelley, who is challenging his appraisal, said it proposes a six percent increase. “The tax bill is the biggest concern. But also you just want a fair valuation for the home, and I know they look at sales in the area," Kelley said. "And if you look at sales right in that immediate area they just don’t support the increase.” But not all residents are disputing increases. Fareeha Latif saw a seven percent decline in her property value, which puts her mortgage underwater. Latif acknowledges a number of foreclosed homes in her area. “I’m paying my mortgage, so it shouldn’t affect me. They increase the tax every year and I have to pay a higher mortgage," she said. "So why would my house value go down? It’s not fair.”

Mingo said property owners need supporting documents to win an appeal. The auditor’s office saod about one-third of property values remained flat. Mingo added most property owners whose received proposed increases should not expect sizable increases in their tax bills.