Posted on June 06, 2022 in: Guest Column
“How does your office determine the value of my house or property?”. That is one of the most frequently asked questions that we receive at the Citrus County Property Appraiser’s office. Hopefully, I will be able to share some insights on how our office and other Property Appraiser’s offices around the state value your residential property.
Florida law requires that the Citrus County Property Appraiser’s office determines the value of all real property (real estate) and tangible (personal) property, for example business equipment and rental furnishings, as of January 1st of each year. So, when you receive your Truth in Millage (TRIM) notice in August and Tax Bill in November from the Tax Collector's office this year, it will be based on data that was collected January 1, 2021, through December 31, 2021. The TRIM notice allows you to review your parcel summary for accuracy. The staff at the Citrus County Property Appraiser’s office is always available to help you understand the TRIM notice or answer any questions regarding your property values, exemptions, assessment caps or specifically how the changing real estate market may affect you. Please don’t throw it away even though it is not a bill. Open it and review it for accuracy. If you have any questions, please call a member of my staff so that we may assist you.
As mentioned, the Property Appraiser’s Office appraises the value of all residential, commercial, agricultural, and tangible personal properties in Citrus County. Today, we will solely concentrate on the residential component of our office and our legal responsibility.
Throughout the year, our staff collects data and by July, the market values are determined. When that is completed and submitted by our office to the taxing authorities, they are able to begin the process to set their millage rates. We use a state-of-the-art Computer Assisted Mass Appraisal (CAMA) system to continuously process property data from local and industry sources and field inspections. Every year we update property values based on the market conditions as of January 1.
The first step in our assessment process for residential areas is to determine your home’s market value, by considering what it would cost to replace your home and the sales prices of similar homes in the area. “Market” value is based on the current real estate market by discovering the price most people would pay for your property in its current condition in the open market. It is very important to understand that the Citrus County Property Appraiser’s Office understands current market conditions to make a determination of a fair market value for ad-valorem tax purposes. The values are set by the buyers and sellers in the real estate marketplace. The Citrus County Property Appraiser office’s legal responsibility is to study the transactions mentioned above and appraise your property accordingly.
The next step is to review all improvements to your property. So, if something has been removed from your property, we can take that off of your parcel record. Per Florida State Statute we also must conduct a physical inspection at least every five years through on-site visits or review of aerial photography. Here at the Citrus County Property Appraiser’s office, we assign a specific field appraiser and certified appraiser to specific areas so they are familiar and are experts in your particular neighborhood. We only want to value your property for what is fair and equitable, nothing more and nothing less.
Remember, I only want to value your property for what is fair and equitable. Make sure to look for your Trim notice to hit your mailbox around mid-August. Review it carefully, and if you have any questions, please contact our office. We have included your assigned certified appraisers phone number on the notice so you can speak with them directly if you have any questions regarding your values. If you forgot to apply for homestead or any other exemptions please do so before the deadline date that will be printed on the Trim notice. After that date you will be required to file a Value Adjustment Board (VAB) petition with the Citrus County Clerk of Court. It is no longer up to our office if the exemptions will be granted for that year after the deadline date.