NORTH HAVEN — The town has begun revaluation of all taxable properties.
Jay Cembruch, of Waterbury-based eQuality Valuation Services and supervisor of the revaluation, said the company started residential inspections about a month ago. He said only a small number of homes have been visited so far, since the weather has been so cold.
The town is required by state statutes to complete a partial revaluation every five years and full revaluation devery 10 years. Real estate values in town are currently set at the 2014 level, after the last partial revaluation.
Data collected in this revaluation process is used to produce the next year’s grand list in an effort to secure a more equitable distribution of the tax burden.
This year’s revaluation means residents should expect to see inspectors measuring the exterior of homes and knocking on doors, asking to do an interior inspection as well.
“We’re making a first attempt to go to every house (now) — it’s not scheduled, they go from door to door,” Assessor Gary Johns said. “If the homeowner allows them in the house, then they will look around the house for any changes to the information we already have.”
Some of the information inspectors will review includes details like number and types of rooms, fixtures in bathrooms, if the basement is finished, and the general condition of the home — whether it needs updating or is newly built. The goal is to make sure the town’s records match reality.
The inspectors, who have all passed background checks, will always carry identification. Police have been informed of the inspections and residents are encouraged to call the assessor’s office to verify any information.
“Every individual or collector that works for us has a physical ID, a badge, also will have a document from the assessor’s office that has their picture on it, with their car info,” Cembruch said.
In the event that a resident is not home at the time of their visit, inspectors may proceed with measuring the exterior of the structure but will not attempt to enter without permission. Additionally, if a relative or child is home alone, inspectors will not enter the interior and will return when a homeowner is present.
Inspections are expected to continue until sometime in July. Homeowners can expect to receive a notice of their proposed valuation around the time of the state’s Oct. 1 deadline. The valuations will not be final at that time, as residents will have multiple opportunities to appeal the assessment.
If a homeowner has a question or concern about the proposed valuation, they can call eQuality Valuation Services and arrange for a meeting to discus the valuation process, after which a hearing officer will determine if a review of the property is necessary.
The revaluation and updated assessments won’t affect tax bills until 2020. After the revaluation, all properties will continue to be assessed at 70 percent of fair market value.
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