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Property Assessments Increase Despite Pandemic

Property owners in Scott County may be surprised later this month when they receive new assessment notices. Despite the pandemic, property values have gone up.

County Assessor Tom McManus says he thought values might go down because of the slowdown in the local and national economies. Instead, they've gone up with an average increase for residential property in Scott County of 8.5 per cent, and 6.5 per cent for commercial and industrial property.

"The historically low mortgage rates, and a limited supply, and a high local demand. All those factors play into your basic supply and demand economics and that drives the market."

Under Iowa law, property assessment notices are mailed in late March each year, but the taxes are not due until the fall of the following year, in this case in the fall of 2022.

"So we take all the sales that have already occurred and use that information to set current assessed values, so we trail the market. When we set the January, 2021 assessed values, we're basing it on the 2020 sales that have already occurred."

Assessment appeals can be filed each year in April, but McManus urges anyone with questions to call his office first. He also says the value of individual property can vary based on location, condition, quality, size, amenities, and other factors.

A native of Detroit, Herb Trix began his radio career as a country-western disc jockey in Roswell, New Mexico (“KRSY, your superkicker in the Pecos Valley”), in 1978. After a stint at an oldies station in Topeka, Kansas (imagine getting paid to play “Louie Louie” and “Great Balls of Fire”), he wormed his way into news, first in Topeka, and then in Freeport Illinois.