Join Waukesha resident Brien Lee and his blog, Sir Fido, as they explore the city and report on the interesting things they find.
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If you've received your 2009 Notice of Assessment and plan on fighting it... good luck. How many people have the time and resources to get an appraisal, do a market analysis, get repair estimates, compare recent sales of similar properties?
I suppose if it was easy to get the assessment lowered, everyone would do it. The first hoop I had to jump through to learn more about our assessment; the webpage listed on the reassessment, www.ci.waukesha.wi.us/Assessor does not exist. It just reinforces what I've been thinking. Property value goes up in a recession? Doesn't happen.
I probably wouldn't be writing about this if I agreed with our reassessment. It's nice to know property value is increasing. Usually. But today there's job insecurity, layoffs, foreclosures... the only ones getting raises are the City Administrator and AIG execs.
Our land increased over 50% in value since the last reassessment in 2005? The total assessed value doubled since we bought the place around 1995? We're still one of the last to be plowed out after a snowstorm and city sewage still floods the basement if it rains hard enough.
We do what we can to keep up the place. No improvements, just upkeep. Still have original 70's era fixtures and a gravel drive, single pane glass and inadequate insulation. Never hired a lawn service or landscaper.
I know it's impossible for the city to go door to door or to know the changing conditions of every property, but if the assessor thinks we could sell this house for $178,000, then please tell us how to get a new roof, paint, doors, trees, plumbing... because that's the only way it'll sell for that much.