The Pennsylvania counties of Allegheny, Lehigh, Lebanon and Erie will be conducting countywide reassessments in 2012. The reassessment notices from Allegheny County have already started to be sent to property owners, and issuance of those for Lehigh, Lebanon and Erie will begin at the end of February.
Property owners should review a notice of reassessment carefully. In addition to examining the reassessed value, scrutiny should be given to the property description, location, acreage, etc. on the notice. During a countywide reassessment, every property in a county is reassessed. Because of the sheer volume of the undertaking, mistakes will happen.
With respect to analyzing valuation, the “new” reassessed value should be compared with the imputed fair market value of the “old” assessment in order to determine if the new reassessed value is appropriate. In general, to determine the imputed fair market value of the “old” assessment, take the “old” assessment and divide it by the common level ratio for your county published at www.steb.state.pa.us. Broadly speaking, property values have not gone up over the last several years, especially for commercial and industrial properties. So, if the reassessed value indicates a rise in fair market value, an appeal may be in order.
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