Every parcel of real property in Stokes County, including the properties in the county seat of Danbury, has been reassessed and assigned a new value that will determine the taxes owed by property owners for the next four years. Property owners across the county are now asking themselves whether they should appeal the county’s decision about the value of their properties — and if so, how?
Stokes County Tax Administrator Richard Brim told Bell, Davis & Pitt that average property values have increased by 13% since the last county-wide revaluation in 2017. That figure is an average, so some property owners may notice larger or smaller increases. Mr. Brim noted that properties in the Riverland area along the Dan River, in particular, may see a more substantial increase than other areas of the county. But what should you do if you think the assessed your property at higher than its fair market value? You appeal!
Appealing Your Stokes County Property Value
There are two types of appeals available to Stokes County property owners: informal and formal. An informal appeal requires property owners to follow the instructions in the revaluation notice from the county and contact the assessor’s office within 30 days of receiving the notice. You will be given an opportunity to present evidence (most commonly, sales of comparable properties in the area) showing that your property’s reassessed value is greater than what a willing buyer would pay to purchase your property.
If your informal appeal is denied, or you miss the 30-day window to appeal, you can still file a formal appeal to the Stokes County Board of Equalization and Review (the “BER”). The BER will begin hearing appeals on April 5th and adjourns on May 17th. In order to have your appeal heard by the BER, you must file the appeal by May 17 (or submit the appeal in a postmarked envelope by that date).
Commercial property owners in the county, particularly the utility companies that make up a large portion of the tax base, should consider filing an appeal if they can locate sales of comparable properties for less than the county’s reassessment of their properties. Property tax appeal veterans John Cocklereece and Justin Hardy created the 2021 Guide to NC Commercial Property Tax Revaluation to help you decide whether to take the next step – check it out!