Revaluation taxes homeowners can expect

January 23, 2008 5:44:01 PM PST
Now that Wake County commissioners are lowering the tax rate in the aftermath of last year's revaluations, homeowners are wondering if their tax bills will decrease, stay the same, or go away.

Wake County homeowners received the information in November. The revaluation of property was assessed for the first time in years.

Many living in trendy neighborhoods experienced sticker shock -- fearful that skyrocketing values could lead to excessive tax bills.

"In a lot of the residential neighborhoods, the land would've had a three times increase because they're in very high demand," Emmett Curl, Wake County Revenue Director, said.

Now homeowners are getting a better idea of how much they can expect to shell out next year.

Tuesday Wake commissioners voted to lower the county tax rate from .67 per $100 of property to .53 -- a revenue neutral rate.

But revenue neutral does not necessarily mean neutral tax bills.

"No, it does not at all," Raleigh Mayor Charles Meeker said. "Even though the tax rate may be revenue neutral to Raleigh, if one's house assessment has gone up more than 20 or 25 percent, that homeowner will get a higher dollar bill because the increase in value was greater than the countywide increase in value."

Those whose home values didn't go up much may see a lower tax bill. Most will see only a minor bump, says the county's revenue director.

"I would say 70 percent are gonna have a slight increase in their tax bill to the same tax bill to less," Emmett Curl, Wake County Revenue director, said.

But those whose homes are worth a whole lot more -- they will in fact pay for it.

"If you were in a neighborhood where values went up 50 or 75percent, you're gonna see a significant increase in the dollar amount of your bill, regardless of what the tax rate is, and that's just the bottom line," Meeker said.


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