So how do you challenge your assessment?
Challenging your assessment is easy. If you got to this web page, then you can also go to the county's Assessment & Parcel Database , from which you can get the first two things you need in order to challenge your assessment.
The first is your detailed assessment report. Once at the Assessment & Parcel Database, select "Search by: Parcel ID Number (PIN)". Enter your PIN number, which arrived in the mail from the Assessors Office in February. Select the current year, and press "submit". Print out your detailed assessment report. While you are at it, select all previous years and see if you can obtain an assessment report for them too.
If you have questions about your assessment, call 703-777-0290. Information used as a basis for the calculation is available for you to review. Make sure to ask for the initials of the assessor alleged to have performed your assessment(s). Ask that a copy of the detailed assessment report be mailed to you. Ask the name of the assessor corresponding to the initials on your report. Ask the name of the person handling your call. Record all this in writing and save this information, as it will come in handy later.
You have the right to meet the person who assessed your property to discuss your assessment. If told "that person no longer works for us", still demand to know that person's name. We are aware of several cases that lead us to question whether an assessor whose initials have been on assessment reports really performed the assessment. Please do us and other taxpayers a favor and let us know of your success in identifying / meeting with your purported assessor (LoudounTAG@aol.com).
You might like to know that,
1. By law, the "fair market value", not speculative value, is the only legal rule provided by law for the assessment of property. "Fair market value" is defined as the price which it will bring when it is offered for sale by one who desires, but is not obliged, to sell it, and bought by one who is under no necessity of having it.
2. Routine maintenance is not considered an improvement. Click here for the pertinent Virginia Code.
3. Reduction in value of a property due to an easement should be reflected in your assessment. Click here for the pertinent Virginia Code.
3. You can obtain printouts of the assessments of homes you feel are comparable in value to your own. Purportedly, you may enter address information for your neighborhood in the Assessment & Parcel Database to obtain this information. In our experience this feature hasn't worked too well, so you may call 703-777-0290 to obtain instructions on how to visit the county administration building to obtain it.
4. While we do our best at helping you, the taxpayer, we are not and shouldn't be confused with, professional assessors, lawyers, etc. For further questions about Virginia Code regarding assessments, click here. Your search probably begins around 58.1-3300.
5. If your property is in land use, it is important to verify that county records show your property to be classified properly. If it hasn't, then you may be due a refund. Click here to visit the county's land use information page.
Property owners who are not satisfied with results of the hearing may appeal to the Board of Equalization, comprised of three property owners appointed by the Circuit Court to hear assessment appeals. The Board of Equalization's number is 703-777-0289.
PLEASE NOTE: IT IS NOT NECESSARY TO CHALLENGE YOUR ASSESSMENT WITH THE BOARD OF ASSESSORS.
The deadline for filing an appeal to the board is June 5. If your original appeal to the Board of Assessors hasn't yet been heard OR YOU DIDN’T MAKE ONE, don't let that stop you from filing for appeal to the Board of Equalization.
Click here for the form you need to file an appeal with the Board of Equalization.
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