Tax Reassessment

In North Carolina, real estate must be reassessed for tax purposes at least once every eight years or less. To balance the increases & decreases, Wake County chose, post-recession, to assess every 4 years. The most recent assessment was this past January, covering all residential and commercial, land and structures. Real estate is assessed at “fair market value.” This is the most probable price a property would bring in a competitive and open market. Property values are determined by several factors including sale price of similar properties, replacement property cost, potential income, highest or best use of property, and many other factors.

Reassessment’s aim is to ensure that all properties are valued and taxed equitably. Appraisers divide the county into approximately 44,000 neighborhoods, grouping homes with similar characteristics, that react to the market in similar ways. Then all sales in the county are analyzed to determine land value in each neighborhood. All this is combined to create the Schedule of Values (SOV). The SOV contains the rates to be applied to land and buildings to estimate the market value of all properties in the county.

In the last reassessment, 2016, the residential property values overall were close to the 2008 value (values that had decreased during the recession came back, overall, to the 2008 value).

What does all of this mean for you?

For one, the tax rate is usually lower than the potential market sale price. Many people receive this information and are disappointed to find that their house is worth less than they expected. The county likes to be “tax neutral” with its estimates. You can even hire your own appraiser and petition, within a certain time period, to have the value changed.

When is the information released?

Wake County homeowners received their new assessed value this past January.  To see any values, go to

Historically, Wake County commissioners lower tax rates in response to increased overall valuations, though we will know in July.

A lot of sellers like increased values, potentially leading to higher sales prices. Ask me how this works best for you, if you plan to sell this year.

At the same time, buyers prefer lower values to leverage in purchasing. If you are interested in buying a property for yourself or for investment purposes, let me know.

Some property values have gone up and some have gone down.  Let me know if you’d like “comparables” on your property.