For the past three years, commercial property owners in Gwinnett County, Georgia have aggressively appealed their valuations and won sizeable reductions. As a result, the tax digest has dramatically decreased from pre-recession levels.
Even though the real estate economy remains depressed, the assessor's office plans to reappraise several property classes for 2013. Values are projected to rise 20%-30% for some properties, so additional appeals will be necessary for many taxpayers.
Which Properties are Targeted?
The 2013 reval is expected to focus on the following property types:
Large office buildings
Shopping centers with a grocery store anchor
Mini-warehouses and some larger warehouses
Any commercial property that recently sold
The assessor's office recommends a Real Property Tax Return be filed if a property is newly purchased or has had extensive repair, remodel, damage or demolition in 2012. However, filing a Real Property Tax Return is not required to receive a Notice of Current Assessment, which will allow an appeal to be filed.
The assessor's office will begin issuing Notices of Current Assessment to all property owners in early April. The proposed distribution schedule is:
April 6-8: Commercial and residential real property
May 18: Tangible business personal property
June 8: Marine and aircraft personal property
We ask our clients to immediately forward their notices to POER so we can get right to work on analyzing the proposed valuation and planning an appeal strategy.
Notices Contain New Information
After several years of litigation and a court order, Gwinnett County and 15 cities reached a negotiated settlement that affects the way the county provides some services.
This agreement created four new service districts that became effective on January 1, 2013. The service districts include all of the different areas in Gwinnett County that receive designated services provided by county government.
The new service districts also change the way property owners will pay for county-provided services. Starting this year, Gwinnett County property tax bills will reflect millage rates based on where a property is located and what specific services are provided by county government.