Real Estate Assessment Review and Appeal Process
The real estate assessment Review and Appeal process began when Notices of Assessment were mailed to property owners on February 8, 2013.
Property owners who contend that the assessed value does not represent the fair market value of their property as of January 1 for the assessment year, or that the assessment is not equitable with comparable properties, or is otherwise erroneous, may request that the Department of Real Estate Assessments (Department) review the assessment, or you may file an Appeal with the Board of Equalization and Assessment Review (Board).
The deadline for requesting a Review of Assessment by the Department is March 15, 2013. Review forms are considered filed timely with the Department if received or postmarked by the U.S. Postal Service no later than March 15, 2013. The deadline for filing an Appeal of Real Estate Assessment with the Board of Equalization and Assessment Review is June 1, 2013. Appeal forms will be considered filed with the Board if received or postmarked by the U.S. Postal Service no later than June 1, 2013. It is not a requirement that you first request a review of the assessment by the Department before you file an appeal with the Board, but we strongly encourage you to do so.
Property owners who are not satisfied after seeking a remedy through the real estate assessment Review and Appeal process may file suit in the Alexandria Circuit Court within three years of the tax assessment year in question. In order to file a lawsuit, the property owner or the owner's agent must have appealed the alleged erroneous assessment to the Board of Equalization and Assessment Review and they must have heard and acted on the appeal.
Before filing a Review or Appeal please consider the following steps:
- Start by finding out all the facts about the assessment of your property:
- Gather the facts about your property's real estate assessment. For example, what does the assessment office records show the total living area and lot size to be?
- Ask to talk to the appraiser with the Department who appraised your property. Ask that he or she explain why your assessment changed or is assessed at its current level. Ask the appraiser to address your concerns regarding incorrect property data, comparable sales used to determine the assessment, and comparable assessments.
- Assessment information is available from the Real Estate Assessments Information Search. on the web, or over the phone (703.746.4646), via e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org) or by visiting Room 2600 at City Hall, 301 King Street.
- The records are available for inspection and copying in the Department on Monday through Friday from noon until 4:00 p.m., except on such days when the office is otherwise closed.
Gather facts about the assessments of comparable properties in your neighborhood:
Talk to others in your neighborhood about their assessments. You may view the sales in your study group available on the web site and compare those assessed values and sales prices to the assessed value of your property. You may also call the Department to attain the assessments and other comparative information for other homes in your neighborhood.
Analyze the information and decide whether you wish to appeal:
Once you have had an opportunity to complete the above items you may decide that your assessment is reasonable. If not, you may wish to file a request with the Department that we review the current assessment or you may want to file an appeal with the Board. If you pursue the assessment Review and Appeal process, each type of filing requires you to state the reason that you are requesting a review or the reasons why you are appealing the assessment. Having done the research already, you will be ready to clearly state your reasons and present information that supports your position on the correct assessment. Remember, the assessment can be increased by the Department or the Board of Equalization and Assessment Review, as well as lowered.
Prepare your submission:
- Once you have decided to file a request for Review of assessment or an appeal, be sure to complete the necessary forms as described in the instructions included with each form by the deadline. If you have questions, each form includes contact information where departmental staff can be reached to answer your questions.
- It is easier for the Department or the Board to visualize your property and comparable sales and assessments if you include photographs. Also, it is easier for Department staff and the members of the Board to follow your presentation of facts and information if:
Pages that are attached to the form are numbered
For commercial property owners or agents to explain differences in previously submitted income and expense data and what is being represented as part of the request for review of the assessment or the appeal
If you have further questions about the real estate review and appeal process, please call 703.746.4646 during normal business hours, or e-mail email@example.com