MADISON, Wis. - Madison residents are receiving mailings indicating their assessments have fallen for the fourth consecutive year, although property values across the city rose because of rising commercial values.
Residential assessments fell an average of 0.5 percent across the city in 2013, with condominiums and properties on the north and far east sides leading the decline, according to data from the city assessor's office.
City Assessor Mark Hanson said the city is turning a corner.
"This follows three years in a row of declines, so overall this is a good report," he said.
Condo values fell an average of 2.7 percent, as the market remains soft. Only 4.1 percent of condo units rose in value.
Single-neighborhood assessments fell by 12.6 percent in the Burr Oaks-Lincoln School neighborhood on the South side, the worst drop in the city. The neighborhood generally covers the area between Fish Hatchery Road, West Wingra Drive, South Park Street, and the Beltline.
Values also struggled in the area around East Washington Avenue and further north.
Assessments in the Northport-Sherman Village neighborhood fell 6.8 percent, while the East Washington Avenue-Stoughton Road-Commercial Avenue community's property values fell 6.3 percent.
Neighborhoods in the Near East side, Near West and West sides fared better, averaging modest gains.
"There's still a bunch of foreclosures out there, so we're still working through that on the housing side," Hanson said.
Commercial assessments saw double-digit percentage increases among properties with more than 17 units.
A decline in assessed value makes it less likely property taxes will increase, although municipalities can control that through levy increases, WISC-TV reported. A drop in assessed value isn't a problem unless owners are looking to sell their homes, because assessed values are directly tied to housing prices.
The city assessor's office sent notices Friday to property owners where the assessed value has changed. Owners have until May 13 to file objections.
For information on how to appeal, visit this city webpage.
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