The Assessor's Office receives a considerable amount of public scrutiny
along with State and County reviews. That in itself makes our department
somewhat unique. We have an annual review of our work by the Board of Review,
which reviews our work by our most critical entity; the taxpayer. Since
the passage of Proposal A and principal residence Exemptions, the Assessing
Department has undergone several changes.
Not only are we to appraise every property in the Township (14,000+ parcels),
but we also have to insure that every resident who qualifies receives a
Homestead Exemption. Our 2016 State Equalized Value (SEV) is $1,317,841,300
Important Information for Disabled Veterans
Governor Rick Snyder recently signed legislation that extends the current homestead property tax exemption
for disabled military veterans to a veteran’s spouse if the veteran passes away before the tax
break is granted. The existing property tax exemption eases the cost of home ownership for military
veterans who were honorably discharged and are disabled and unable to work.
ONGOING PROPERTY ASSESSMENTS:
The State Tax Commission advises us to visit each property in the township
on a five-year cycle. The purpose of this is to update our records and correct
them if necessary. In keeping with safety and security
procedures, all personnel from the Assessor’s Office will be carrying a
picture ID and driving a township vehicle in the residential areas.
Letting our appraiser inspect your property thoroughly will ensure that
we have correct records and avoid mistakes, creating fairness and uniform treatment of our property taxpayers. Thank you for your cooperation.
PROPERTY ASSESSMENT INFORMATION: The
Online Property Information Service will let you look up information
regarding township properties. The areas covered in this service include:
Property and Land Search, Assessing Comparables Search, Tax Information
Search, Building Department Search (Permits, Certificates, and Projects),
and Special Assessment Searches.
Please note that
all users will be able to access their records free of charge by
creating an account on the site.
We no longer charge a fee for this
HOW IS YOUR PROPERTY APPRAISED?
The Assessor's Office first reviews all the property to be assessed, then
values it. Accurate appraisals require constant searching and digging for
significant facts to accumulate and analyze in order to estimate the fair
market value of your property.
WHAT IS MARKET VALUE?
Finding the market value of your property involves discovering the price
most people would pay for it in its present condition (such things as location,
style, size, condition, etc., all effect the market value of property).
It's not that simple, because the assessor has to find what the value would
be for every property, no matter how big or small. But the assessor's job
doesn't stop there. Each year it has to be done all over again, because
the market value of almost everything changes from one year to the next.
WHY HAVE A PROPERTY TAX?
Properties are appraised and taxes are paid for the operation and financing
of Township and County government, operation of schools, fire and police
protection and other public benefits. Taxpayers share the cost, in proportion
to the amount of money their individual properties are worth. The property
tax is part of a well-balanced revenue system. It is a more stable source
of money than sales and income taxes because it does not fluctuate when
communities have recessions. When the community spends your tax dollars
on better schools, parks and so on, your property values generally rise.
WHY DO ASSESSED VALUES CHANGE FROM YEAR TO YEAR?
When market value changes, naturally so does assessed value. For instance,
if you were to add a garage to your home, the assessed value would probably
increase. The real estate market generally increases due to many factors.
The assessor has not created the value. PEOPLE MAKE VALUE by their transactions
in the marketplace. The assessor simply has the legal responsibility to
study those transactions and appraise your property accordingly.
TAXABLE VALUE AND THE TAX RATE?
The assessor's office has nothing to do with the total amount of taxes collected.
The assessor's primary responsibility is to find the fair market value of
your property, so that you may pay your fair share of the taxes. A TAX RATE
applied to your property's TAXABLE VALUE determines the amount of tax you
pay. The tax rate is determined by all the taxing agencies, which include
the township, county, school districts and others. The assessor's office
also keeps track of ownership changes, maintains maps of parcel boundaries,
keeps descriptions of building and property characteristics up to date,
keeps track of properties eligible for exemptions and other forms of property
tax relief, such as homestead exemptions. Most importantly, the assessor
analyzes trends in sale prices, construction costs, and rents to estimate
the value of all assessable property. All this must be done economically,
accurately and uniformly.
WHAT ARE YOUR RIGHTS AND RESPONSIBILITIES?
If your opinion of the value of your property differs from the Assessor's,
go to the office and discuss the matter. Staff will be glad to answer your
questions about the appraisal and explain how to appeal if you cannot come
to an agreement. The assessor's office relies on the property owner for
information. You can help by providing accurate information.
The Assessor's Office continues to work on digitally photographing each
dwelling within the Township. The photographs are used for assessing purposes
and are maintained as part of the property record card system. All appraisers
will have pictured identification with them and will be in a marked Plainfield
Township vehicle, when available.