Rockland hires firm to review, adjust property values

By Stephen Betts | Oct 29, 2019

Rockland — Rockland has hired a company to review and adjust values of properties.

KRT Appraisal is being paid $74,000 to perform the work that will result in property owners getting their proposed new values early next summer.

This will not be a full-scale revaluation, which was last done in 2005. The firm will examine the exterior of all properties and analyze two years' worth of sales.

"While our last state valuation showed our assessments to be within the state's standards, there have been many changes in the market since 2005, including the real estate bubble, the bursting of that bubble, and now the rebounding from the crash," the assessor wrote in the budget request for the money earlier this year.

The city had initially budgeted $125,000 for the work.

Notices will be sent to homeowners after the assessments are adjusted, and then hearings would be held for anyone who asks for one.

KRT will conduct a statistical update, a sales and review/validation, market analysis, valuation, field review, and informal hearings. During these phases many tasks will be completed to ensure the statistical update is successful, Rockland Assessor Roxy LaFrance said.

She said KRT staff will go out and look at the exterior of all the buildings and review each property that sold and will sell between April 1, 2018 and March 31, 2020.

The goal is to gain a clear understanding of what sold and for what price, she said.

KRT field representatives will carry picture identifications, municipal letters of introduction, and have their vehicles listed with both the assessor’s office and police department.

The general rule of thumb for adjustments of valuations is that one third of property owners will pay more, one third will pay less, and one third will see no change -- contingent on no change in the amount of taxes being raised.

Comments (6)
Posted by: SYD LEACH | Oct 31, 2019 19:16

GOOD LIKE HaHa.your going to be screwed..Tighten your Butt and get some money are going to be like wow...


Posted by: Kendall Merriam | Oct 30, 2019 15:59

Interesting that city council continuously says Rockland needs "more affordable housing" and then launches a project to jack up home owners property taxes.

Posted by: Ananur Forma | Oct 30, 2019 12:04

We won't know the property value of our homes in Pen Bay Acres & Shore Village apartments (the landlord) right next door until we know if the proposed Cell Phone Tower will be erected, or not. If erected my home value will surely go way down, then other homes in Rockland will be taxed MORE. I know it's "just speculation." Who the heck wants a 120 cell phone tower right next to their house, when we even don't need it. The reception is fine in Pen Bay Acres and even at Hoyt Eye Care down the road a piece.

Posted by: Stephen K Carroll | Oct 30, 2019 10:05

Gerald I agree it has long been proposed that a re-valuation could help provide more State funding ( based upon the current funding formula).  However this re-val could back fire.  Based on all the new construction (see yesterdays village soup story) what if Rockland turns out to be under valued then taxes go up and school funding goes down and we are out the $75,000 we wasted on the process.

Posted by: Francis Mazzeo, Jr. | Oct 30, 2019 09:22

In that sense, all of these expensive homes in the south end create more expense for the other home owners. They add nothing to the economy.

Posted by: Gerald A Weinand | Oct 30, 2019 06:57

There is more to this review than the impact on each individual property owner. The State's school funding formula, called Essential Planning and Services (EPS), uses property value as one of its major factors. It is believed that Rockland as a whole is "over-valued," which means less State funding sent to the City to offset its financial obligation to RSU13.

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