© 2024 WUKY
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Some Lexingtonians are seeing a big jump in property value assessments. Here's why and what you can do.


Property value assessments have risen dramatically for many in Fayette County with this latest round of notifications, but officials are hoping property owners speak up if they feel the numbers are unrealistic.

Some Lexington homeowners are doing a double take when they lay eyes on their latest property value assessment, a harbinger of how much they’ll owe in taxes later this year.

Fayette County Property Valuation Administrator David O’Neill says the hikes have a lot to do with local market forces.

"When sale prices and values are going up 10 percent a year and we only do assessments only four years, 30, 40, 0r 50 percent increases can be somewhat common, or more common than we would like them to be," O'Neill explains. "That's why the past couple of years in particular and probably again next year, we're seeing some sticker shock."

The good news is that the numbers aren’t necessarily final. That’s if property owners choose to protest the assessment — which, despite the name, is actually a process the PVA encourages homeowners to take advantage of.

"When they get the notice in the mail, that's just the beginning of the process, not the end of it. We would really like to hear from property owners on things like deferred maintenance, what kind of condition it's in, anything that they think would affect their ability to sell the house for what we have it assessed for," he says.

And starting that process doesn’t take all that long.

If property owners feel the assessment – which isn’t nearly as detailed as a proper appraisal – is out of bounds, they can go to fayettepva.com and click on “assessments and appeals” at the top right of the site.

O’Neill says the initial protest form takes only about 30 seconds to fill out.

The important part: Get the conversation started before the deadline of May 20.

Josh James fell in love with college radio at Western Kentucky University's student station, New Rock 92 (now Revolution 91.7). After working as a DJ and program director, he knew he wanted to come home to Lexington and try his hand in public radio.