F.C. Real Estate Assessments Up 3.4%; Single Homes Up 4.7%

(Photo: Matt Delaney)

The City of Falls Church released its initial real estate assessment data today, reflecting overall an increase in values of 3.4 percent, led by a 4.66-percent increase in the values of single family homes in the City and a 3.57-percent increase for commercial property values.

By contrast to these hefty increases, multi-family residential values declined by 0.61 percent and townhouses on average rose by a more modest 2.62 percent and residential condominiums by 1.67 percent.

The total taxable assessed value for all properties in the City as of Jan. 1 this year was at $4.1 billion, a 3.4-percent increase over a year earlier. New construction, valued at $36.1 million, accounted for 26.5 percent of the increase, with market appreciation accounting for the remainder. Residential new construction accounted for $33.9 million of the growth, and commercial for only $2.2 million.

According to the City’s release, real estate is assessed at 100 percent of fair market value as mandated by the state constitution. The City of Falls Church’s Office of Real Estate Assessment calculates property values annually using “mass appraisal techniques” that are standard in the real estate assessment industry.

The City said that individual notices of property assessments are due to arrive at individual addresses before the end of the month. The new assessments will be used to determine tax obligations attendant to the adoption of a new annual City budget on April 23, with the first of two annual installments on those obligations due June. 5.

Public hearings on the budget will be held on March 26, April 9, and April 23 at 7:30 p.m. in the Community Center.

After evaluating the assessments, according to the City, 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,” citizens are urged to contact the Office of Real Estate Assessment. Deadlines for assessment appeals are Friday, March 23, 2018, for an Office of Real Estate Assessment review and Friday, June 1, 2018 for a Board of Equalization review.