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City of F.C. Real Estate Assessments Up 6.77%

The total taxable assessed value for all properties in the City as of Jan. 1, 2014, is $3,549,167,400 ($3.5 billion), a 6.77 percent increase from Jan. 1, 2013. The City plans to mail assessments for 2014 in February, so property owners should receive the notices on or after Monday, Feb. 17. Updated assessment information will be posted on the City website Monday, Feb. 17. Individual assessment information will not be available until after the mailing.

Overall residential real estate values increased 6.73 percent over the last year. Single family home values increased by 7.83 percent, townhomes increased by 3.38 percent, and residential condominiums had varying changes but overall condos increased 4.97 percent.

Overall commercial property values increased 2.37 percent since January 2014. The real estate value of multi-family apartments increased 11.15 percent, large office buildings are up 1.19 percent and large retail properties are up 8.29 percent. The value of City hotels remained flat.

In total, new construction accounted for $53 million of the $225 million increase in assessed value: $33 million in Commercial new construction and $20 million in Single Family Residential new construction, totaling 24 percent of the total growth, or 1.6 percent of the 6.77 percent increase.

As set forth in the Virginia Constitution, real estate is assessed at 100 percent of fair market value. The City’s Office of Real Estate Assessment calculates property value annually using mass appraisal techniques that are standard in the real estate assessment industry.

The notice of assessment is an appraisal of the fair market value of the property; it is not a tax bill. Property tax payments will be due in two installments on June 5 and Dec. 5; property owners will receive bills prior to these dates.

The real estate tax rate will be determined on April 28, 2014, when the Falls Church City Council adopts the Fiscal Year 2015 Operating Budget and Capital Improvements Program and sets the tax rate. Public hearings on the Fiscal Year 2015 Proposed Operating Budget will be held on March 24, April 14, and April 28 at 7:30 p.m. in Council Chambers (300 Park Ave.). To see the complete budget schedule, visit fallschurchva.gov/Budget.

Individual assessments will be mailed in February. After evaluating the assessment, homeowners wondering if their assessment is correct should ask the question, “Would my home sell for the assessed value if I put it on the market?” If the answer is “yes,” the assessment is probably accurate. If the answer is “no,” contact the Office of Real Estate Assessment at 703-248-5022.

Deadlines for assessment appeals are Friday, March 14, 2014, for an Office of Real Estate Assessment review and Monday, July 7, 2014 for a Board of Equalization review. More information about the assessment review process is available online at fallschurchva.gov/AssessmentProcess.

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