Midvalley home values down 20 percent more | AspenTimes.com

Midvalley home values down 20 percent more

Scott Condon
The Aspen Times

Many property owners in the mid-Roaring Fork Valley likely are to find another significant decrease in the value of their homes or commercial real estate when Eagle County’s new notices of valuation arrive by the end of this week.

Residential property in the Basalt and El Jebel areas is down by about 20 percent, based on a median, from the last reappraisal in May 2011, Eagle County Assessor Mark Chapin said Monday. Commercial property is down about 10 percent from two years ago, he said.

The state government mandates reappraisals every other year, in the odd years. Chapin stressed that there is a “time delay” in calculating the appraisals that often confuses people. This reappraisal is based on real estate sales from Jan. 1, 2011, through June 30, 2012. The midvalley real estate market was slumping throughout that 18-month period.

“There were quite a few foreclosures,” Chapin said. “The market got really soft.”

The dive comes on the heels of a bigger decrease in property values in May 2011. The median decline was 23 percent in Eagle County in the May 2011 reappraisal, Chapin said. The median decline is 18 percent countywide this year, he said.

Property values dropped the most in the Basalt-El Jebel area and in the Eagle and Gypsum areas of the Eagle Valley, according to Chapin. Both areas feature a lot of “worker bee” housing that soared in value before the 2008 recession. The housing in those areas tended to tumble by the highest amounts in the four years after the recession.

There are signs that the real estate market has stabilized in Eagle County since June, so property owners might be confused why their values took another tumble.

“We may have people come in and say, ‘Hey, wait a minute — your values are too low,” Chapin said. One reason why they might care is because they are trying to refinance and want a higher value assigned to their homes.

In 2011, between 3,500 and 3,600 property owners in Eagle County protested the value of their property by the Assessor’s Office. In many cases, they didn’t feel the value fell enough, according to Chapin. He is uncertain how many protests to expect this year.

Assessors in all Colorado counties are sending out the notice of valuations Today. Property owners will receive their notice likely by the end of the week.

“Property owners who believe their 2013 property value is not supported by the real estate market from January 1, 2011 to June 30, 2012, or whose property’s characteristics are not listed correctly on the Notice of Valuation, can appeal their valuation through June 3,” Eagle County said in a statement released Monday.

An electronic appeal can be made at http://www.eaglecounty.us/gov. El Jebel and Basalt property owners can make an appointment to protest in person to an appraiser at the Eagle County Annex in El Jebel on any Wednesday in May. The appointment can be made by calling 800-225-6136, ext. 8640.

The property-value decreases will result in a decrease in property taxes collected by some special districts in Eagle County, Chapin said. Basalt’s entitles might be hit harder than those elsewhere in Eagle County, he said, because of the ongoing drop in property values. Some districts braced for the decrease, such as the Basalt and Rural Fire Protection District. It successfully sought voter approval for a property tax increase in November to offset the loss of revenues from lower property values.



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