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Norwalk property revaluation underway

Newer residents may be surprised

The Norwalk Tax Assessor’s Office.

NORWALK, Conn. — The 2023 reval has begun, according to the City’s Tax Assessor’s Department.

“Starting this week, Vision Government Solutions’ (Vision), hired by the City of Norwalk in October 2022, will begin the process by initiating the City-wide 2023 Revaluation Project. Vision will work closely with the Tax Assessor’s Department to complete this 12-month project,” a Monday news release said.

State law requires all Connecticut municipalities to reevaluate properties every five years, with inspections required every 10 years. The last full measure and list revaluation in the City of Norwalk was completed in 2013 and a statistical market adjustment update was done in 2018.

Council member Nora Niedzielski-Eichner (D-At Large) expressed surprise Thursday that inspectors will be knocking on resident’s doors and asking to walk into homes. “Not having not lived in the city when this happened before I assumed that it meant an out of house (inspection),” she said at the Council Finance Committee meeting.

She moved here from New York, she said.

“Although New York does re evaluations, they’re all exterior. They do statistical evaluations, and they just update the information on a periodic basis,” Tax Assessor William Ford said.

Inspectors have badges, letters of introduction and their vehicles have an assessment department notification on the dashboard, he explained.

The news release listed the reval’s major phases:

  • Phase 1 – Data Collection
    • “This first phase begins this week as data collectors visit property owners to verify the data on file at their properties. Data collectors and city personnel will perform inspections of properties noting the location, size, age, and quality of construction, improvements, topography, utilities, zoning restrictions if any, and numerous other characteristics. The data collection phase is critical, as it enables the City to ensure accurate measurements on main structures and This is the most time- intensive phase of the project but the most critical for data accuracy and integrity. This phase is estimated to be completed by July 2023.”

 

  • Phase 2 – Market Analysis
    • “For this phase, a variety of resources are used to analyze the real estate market. While the physical data is being collected, appraisal personnel analyze property sales over the prior year to determine which market factors influence property values. Once all the data is collected and reviewed for accuracy, appraisers will determine land values and set neighborhood boundaries, contributing to the valuation rates attributed to various locations throughout the City.”

 

  • Phase 3 – Valuation
    • “The valuation phase is completed using three recognized appraisal methods: the Cost Approach, the Income Approach and the Sales Comparison Duringthis phase, individual characteristics of buildings are analyzed using information gathered in phases 1 and 2. Each property is compared to other properties with similar characteristics. Then the contributory market value of improvements is added to the previously determined land values. This value is the final estimate for each parcel of property, building and land.”

 

  • Phase 4 – Final Review
    • “Final review is the method of checking and re-checking the values that have been determined and the data that has been During this review, properties are viewed in the field by experienced appraisers who double-check uniformity and accuracy of information.”

 

  • Phase 5 – Informal Hearings
    • “The informal hearing phase occurs once the data collection, market analysis, valuation, and final review phases of this revaluation are completed, and property owners have been mailed the preliminary estimate of their property’s At this point, anyone with questions concerning the revaluation process or the data collected on their property will have an opportunity to make an appointment to discuss their property value.”

 

In addition to badges, data collectors will be wearing reflective clothing, according to the news release.

“They will also have an ‘Assessor’s Office’ sign posted on the vehicle and their cars will be registered with the Norwalk Police Department and Tax Assessor’s Office. If no one is home during the inspection visit, Vision will send a letter to property owners requesting that the property owner call to arrange for an interior inspection,” the release said.

It continued:

“After the initial data collection phase, market analysis and valuation will begin, followed by a detailed review of properties to check and re-check values to ensure uniformity and accuracy of information. This will be followed by a Notice of New Values mailed to each property owner and an Informal Hearings phase.

“You can also visit the Vision Government Solutions website for additional information explaining each stage of the revaluation process as well as answers to Frequently Asked Questions at https://www.vgsi.com/taxpayer-revaluation-information/

“For questions about the revaluation process or additional information, please contact the Tax Assessor’s Office at (203)-854-7888.”

 

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