Tax Revaluation FAQ's
Will the Borough of Point Pleasant Beach gain more tax dollars as a result of the revaluation?
No! A revaluation does not increase the revenue collected. It is a revenue-neutral program. The purpose of a revaluation is to insure that assessed values are fair and consistent. Municipal, County and school budgets are determined independently of assessments.
What is a revaluation?
A revaluation, also called tax equalization, is a program undertaken by a municipality to appraise all real property within the municipality according to its full and fair value.
Is this revaluation program voluntary?
The laws of the State of New Jersey and your County Board of Taxation require that the assessed value of all property must be updated periodically.
What is meant by "full and fair value"?
Full and fair value is the price at which a property would sell for at a fair sale by a private contract between a willing buyer and willing seller in an "arms-length" transaction.
What has to be done during a revaluation program?
During the revaluation process, both the interior and exterior of each property are physically inspected and building dimensions are noted. In summary, all information believed to have an influence on value will be gathered, reviewed and analyzed in order to make a proper determination of each property's full and fair value.
What if I am not home when they come to do the inspection?
The data collectors will measure the house and inspect the exterior. If no one is home to allow an interior inspection, they will leave a callback card with a contact number for you to call to set up an appointment for an interior inspection at a specific time.
Will a revaluation increase taxes?
A revaluation program seeks to spread the tax burden equitably within a municipality. Real property must be assessed at the same standard of value to ensure that every property owner is only paying his/her fair share of the property tax. Although the revaluation will result in an increase in virtually every assessment, it does not mean that all property taxes will increase. Remember that a revaluation is revenue-neutral. The Borough does not collect one more dollar in taxes as a result of the revaluation.
How can my assessment increase and my taxes not go up?
Remember that assessments are merely a base used to apportion the tax burden. The tax burden is the amount that must be raised for the operation of the local and county government and the local school system.
Let us assume that the amount a municipality must raise from property taxes is $10 million. Assume also that the total of all assessments in that municipality is $200 million. In this example, a municipality would have a tax rate of $5.00 per hundred:
Amount to be raised from property taxes
Total of Assessments
= Tax Rate
.05 or $5.00 per hundred dollars of assessed value
If the $200 million total of all assessments, on average, represents 50% of the true value of all real property in the municipality, property owners whose assessments reflect more than 50% of true value would be paying an unfair share of the burden. Conversely, property owners whose assessments reflect less than 50% of true value would not be paying their fair share of the burden.
Now, let us assume that in this same year, a revaluation was put into effect and the aggregate assessed value is now $400 million:
Amount to be raised
from property taxes
Total of Assessments
= Tax Rate
.025 or $2.50 per hundred
dollars of assessed value
Raising the assessments to true value does not affect the amount to be raised by taxes. That is determined independently through the budget process. A revaluation does NOT raise revenue. It is revenue-neutral.
Then why do a revaluation?
A revaluation program seeks to spread the tax burden more equitably within a municipality. Real property must be assessed at the same standard of value to ensure that every property owner is paying his/her fair share of the property tax. For example, two properties having essentially the same market value should be paying essentially the same amount in property taxes. Inequitable assessments result from situations such as the following:
- changes in characteristics in areas or neighborhoods within the municipality and
within individual properties;
- fluctuations in the economy (inflation, recession);
- change in style and custom (desirability of architecture, size of house);
- changes in zoning which can either enhance or adversely affect value.
Will taxpayers be informed of their proposed assessment?
The revaluation firm is required to mail each property owner a notice advising of the new appraised value.
What the taxpayer is dissatisfied with the proposed assessment?
The notice that includes the appraised value will also explain how to arrange for a personal informal hearing to review and explain the proposed assessment. A property owner planning to attend such a review should be prepared to support any disagreement regarding the appraised value of his/her property. For example, recent sales of similar or comparable properties are an indication of value. A recent purchase price of the property may also help to support a view as to value. Also, the cost of recently constructed comparable buildings could support a belief of fair market value as well as a recent certified appraisal of the property.
What can a taxpayer do if he/she is unsuccessful in having the valuation of his/her property revised as a result of attending the informal hearing?
The Tax Assessor will file the new tax list with the Ocean County Board of Taxation by March 29, 2013. If the matter of valuation is not resolved prior to the filing and certification of the tax list, an appeal may be filed with the County Board of Taxation within 45 of receipt of the white cards. If the property owner is not satisfied with the results of the County level appeal, an appeal may be filed within 45 days to the New Jersey State Tax Court.
How can I estimate the fair market value of my property?
The easiest way is to check the real estate pages of the newspaper for sales and offerings of similar or comparable properties. You can also contact a realtor or appraiser for assistance. Sales records are also available at the Ocean County Board of Taxation and the Office of the Point Pleasant Beach Tax Assessor.
How can property owners help to make the process more efficient?
Data collectors who come to your home will have visible photo identification. Do not allow anyone into your home without proper identification. Remember, data collectors are not the persons who will determine the market value. They will make the visit to your home as convenient as possible. Your cooperation will be greatly appreciated.
What determines how my property will be valued?
Basically, it's land, location and living space. The size of your property, the neighborhood it's in and the amount of square footage in your house are the most important factors in establishing your home's value.
Here are some examples of other characteristics that would and would not be included in your revaluation:
- Exterior dimensions
- In ground pool
- Finished basement and attics
- Central air conditioning
- Decks, porches, garages
- Interior decoration
- Above ground pools
- Gas grills
- Lawn furniture
ONE LASTREMINDER: THIS REVALUATION WILL NOT RAISE PROPERTY TAX REVENUE. IT SEEKS TO DISTRIBUTE THE TAX BURDEN MORE EQUITABLY SO THAT EACH PROPERTY OWNER IS PAYING ONLY HIS/HER FAIR SHARE OF THE TAX BURDEN.