BY JOHN E. ULIBARRI AAS, RES WEBER COUNTY ASSESSOR
The Weber County Assessor’s Office has several duties, including collecting and maintaining data on the 97,000 real property accounts, processing 6,000 real property permits in 2021, valuing over 100,000 real, and personal property accounts, as well as giving stellar customer service. Our overriding duty is to value all tangible, taxable property in proportion to its market value. Article XIII of the Utah Constitution reads, “So that each person and corporation pays a tax in proportion to the fair market value of his, her, or its tangible property, all tangible property in the State that is not exempt under the laws of the United States or under this Constitution shall be assessed at a uniform and equal rate in proportion to its fair market value, to be ascertained as provided by law…” Utah Code defines fair market value as “…the amount at which property would change hands between a willing buyer and a willing seller, neither being under any compulsion to buy or sell and both having reasonable knowledge of the relevant facts.” In plain language, this means the law tasks the County Assessor’s Office with valuing your property for what you could have reasonably sold it for under normal circumstances. The County Assessor’s Office does not set the tax rates, nor does it collect or distribute property tax.
As you have certainly heard, the 2021 real estate market experienced unprecedented increases in the average sale price of homes. As outlined above, the Utah State Constitution and Utah law require the county assessor to value property in proportion to its market value. This means the assessed value for properties will also see a substantial change.
Blah, blah, blah, what does that mean for you? That means you should review your valuation notice that will arrive in the mail at the end of July. Check the column marked “This Year’s Market Value” and ask yourself whether you could have reasonably sold your property for that amount or not. If the answer is yes, we have done our job. If you believe the answer is no, contact a real estate professional and tell them you believe your property is over-assessed and you are considering an appeal. Request they send you sales of comparable properties that best reflect the value of your home if you were to sell. Most realtors offer this service free of charge. In the end, we are here to serve. Please feel free to contact us with your questions and concerns.
Questions? Contact the Weber County Assessor @ (801) 399-8573