If you live in Denver, you may be wondering why your property tax rate increased nearly 18% year-over-year. That is a pretty substantial increase for anything – much less property taxes which are usually somewhat stable.
People who pay taxes through their mortgage servicers (55% of people in Denver) will see their escrow withholding (and subsequent monthly mortgage payment) increase dramatically – more-so than the tax rate increase. This is due to the nature of escrow withholding and analysis, which may lag behind property tax payments. In my case, this may result in an increase in my mortgage payment of over $100/month!!!
The bulk of the increase comes from voter-passed Questions 2A, 3A and 3B. These combined with other base level increase caused the mil levy to increase from 71.307 mills in 2011 to 84.071 mills in 2012.
These questions, 2A, 3A and 3B, passed in the November election by 74%, 69% and 64% respectively.
People living in Cherry Point (and possibly other areas of Denver???) may be suffering a double hit as some Assessor Valuations were out-of-line with sales activity during the assessment period. In my case, the assessor utilized sales comparisons for valuation which had occurred prior to the real estate downturn – despite the availability of more recent/appropriate sales. I appealed the valuation successfully, but had I not, my property taxes would have been even higher!
A spot check of valuations along our block revealed wide variation in values for similar homes located next to each other.
You can’t do anything about the mil levy. The only opportunity for property owners to lower taxes is through the abatement appeals process. As the 2013 reappraisal is coming up an opportunity will arise for a 2011/2012 abatement appeal.
For information on an abatement petition CLICK HERE