The Carlisle Mosquito Online

Friday, August 25, 2006


Real estate valuations to rise

The housing market may be weak in the knees, but tax valuations are headed higher as the Board of Assessors completes its three-year reassessment of Carlisle properties. Assessor John Speidel estimated an average increase in the range of 10 to 15% when he described the process at the town Finance Team (FinTeam) meeting on August 22.

Valuations are based on the full sales price for similar properties sold recently. Speidel said that because the data spans more than one year, the strong increase in prices during 2005 drive property valuations higher this year.

Tax rate will be adjusted

The FY07 tax rate can be set once the revaluation is complete and has been approved by the state. The FY06 tax rate is $12.99 per $1,000 of property. If the amount of money needed by the town remained constant, the tax rate would drop whenever real estate valuations rise. However, Spring Town Meeting approved appropriations about 4.3% greater than those in FY06. Increases in revenues (such as state aid) as well as expenses will be included when calculating the new tax rate.

Smaller homes hit harder

The value of land has risen much more than the value of a typical house.The FinTeam noted the impact of the revaluations would be uneven, because owners of smaller homes may face a proportionally larger increase."I worry about this disproportionate thing," said Selectman Tim Hult. Town Administrator Madonna McKenzie noted this same situation existed during the previous real estate revaluation in 2003. Chair of the Board of Assessors John Marchant later said he thought the revaluation process was fair. He added that it is driven entirely by market forces.

Assessment criteria are set by the state Department of Revenue, which calls for revaluations at least every three years. Property inspections are mandated every nine years.

The Board of Assessors will discuss the real estate revaluation at their next meeting at 4 p.m. on August 30 at Town Hall, prior to submitting their data for state approval.

2006 The Carlisle Mosquito