Below is a list of commonly asked questions from the public and answers to those questions.
1) How many years of sales does the Appraiser’s Office use in their valuation models?
The County uses 3 years of sales data when valuing single family homes. When it comes to most other property types, we use 5 to 10 years of sales depending on the amount of data available. Current data is given more weight than older data as the market does change over time.
2) Does the Appraisers Office get any tax incentives for increasing valuations?
No, our only goal is to appraise property at its fair market value or use value in the case of agricultural land according to state law. The Appraiser’s Office does not set tax rates or take tax payments. Taxes are based on the budgets set by taxing entities such as the state, schools, cities, fire districts and the County. Taxes are collected by the County Treasurer’s Office.
3) Does a computer set my value?
A computer does not set your property value. The County does use appraisal software to aid in the valuation process, but values are individually set by an appraiser that is looking at your properties specific characteristics every year and a list of model driven values.
4) Where does the County get its sales data?
Sales are filed with the County Register of Deeds Office. Those sales prices are forwarded to the Appraiser’s Office.
5) Does the County use Zillow to value my property?
No, the County collects its own data and does its own data analysis. Entities and individuals such as CoreLogic, Zillow, insurance companies, realtors, bankers, fee appraiser’s and others actually use the County’s data in their estimates of value.
6) Does Miami County use drones to take aerial photos or videos of my property?
The Appraiser’s Office does not own or use any drones. The County does contract with Eagleview an aerial imagery provider that captures images of the entire County from an airplane every 3 years. The cities of the County have access to those images along with other County departments such as EMS, Sheriff, Road and Bridge, Planning, Code Services, etc. These images are also available to the public on the County’s website for free.
7) Can the Appraiser raise and lower values at will?
No. Kansas law requires the County Appraiser to value property at its fair market value. K.S.A. 79-503a states in part , “fair market value’ means the amount in terms of money that a well informed buyer is justified in paying a well informed seller is justified in accepting for a property in an open and competitive market, assuming that the parties are acting without undue compulsion.” The Kansas Constitution, Article 11 states in part, “Except as otherwise hereinafter specifically provided, the legislature shall provide for a uniform and equal basis of valuation and rate of taxation of all property subject to taxation.” To ensure that uniform and equal values are established across the state the Kansas Department of Revenue requires County Appraisals to have a median sales ratio between 90% and 110% of sales prices where 100% would be a perfect median ratio. Meaning the County values property at what it should actually sell for. These ratios are checked by the State to ensure each County is meeting its obligation to value at fair market value and the state is maintaining a uniform and equal basis of valuation and taxation per the State’s constitution.
8) Can anyone get classified to agricultural use?
No. All property in the state is assessed according to it’s use. Property that is used for a residential use is valued as residential. Properties that are used for a commercial business are assessed as commercial. Properties that are used to produce an agricultural product are valued as agricultural.
9) How are the comparable sales selected that are used on my comparable sheet?
The County’s mass appraisal software looks for comparable sales that are the most similar to the property that is being appraised based on characteristics such as home style, quality, condition, size, year built, bathroom count, basement area, basement finish, etc.. The software also tries to find property that are close by before looking outside the properties neighborhood.
10) What does Fair Market Value mean?
Per Kansas Statue 79-503a, “Fair market value means the amount in terms of money that a well informed buyer is justified in paying and a well informed seller is justified in accepting for property in an open and competitive market, assuming that the parties are acting without undue compulsion.”