Duggan: Detroit's Property Tax Assessments to Drop


DETROIT — Mayor Mike Duggan announced today that the average Detroit homeowner will see a tax cut ranging from 5 to 20 percent when 2014 Notices of Property Assessment are mailed out in the next two weeks. The tax cut is a result of a major reform in property assessments that will reduce the residential property assessment for the great majority of Detroiters.

The mayor, who was joined by City Council President Brenda Jones and Chief Assessor Gary Evanko at today’s press conference, said this realignment of property tax assessments is long overdue and necessary to make Detroit more appealing to current and prospective residents.

The reassessment follows an exhaustive review conducted by Evanko and his staff of current assessments and actual home sales between October 1, 2011 and September 30, 2013.  For example, the data revealed that with the exception of some neighborhoods that have maintained their sales value, nearly the entire northwest side of the city was over-assessed by a minimum of 20 percent.

“The process we used was very well thought out and I was extremely impressed with the thoroughness of the work of our assessors,” Mayor Duggan said. “It left no doubt in my mind that these reductions are not only warranted, but the right thing to do by our residents.”

The Mayor said this citywide reassessment is just the first step in reforming the city’s property assessment and taxation process. Over the next three to five years, the city will conduct individual assessments of single family homes across the city for an even more accurate evaluation.

Mayor Duggan said that the city already had anticipated a reduction in property tax revenue of about 13 percent for 2014-2015, and the assessment reductions are in line with those estimates. The City is hoping that fairer assessments will lead to an increase in the number of people paying their property taxes.

“With many people seeing large reductions, we expect to see an increase in the number of homeowners who pay their full taxes,” Evanko said. “In the near term, we expect this move to keep fewer taxpaying residents from leaving the city. In the long term, we believe it will help to bring in more new homeowners and help to start growing our residential tax base.”

By the end of January, the City will mail out notices to every city homeowner informing them of their new assessment. Residents should note that this is a notice of proposed assessment changes and not a tax bill. If they still choose to appeal their assessment, the City of Detroit Finance Department, Assessments Division will begin the annual Assessors Review appeal process, which allows property owners to challenge their 2014 property values. The appeal process will begin Saturday, February 1, 2014, and continue through Saturday, February 15, 2014 at the Coleman A. Young Municipal Center. Tax bills will be mailed in June and payments are due by August 31st.