Prices seemed to be falling as he was buying, he said, and he paid less for his condominium than ones that were sold a month or two earlier. He paid $259,000, including a parking stall, and his fight against City Hall is to have it assessed at $221,000 rather than $241,000, plus $18,000 for the parking stall, which is now treated as a separate property.
He said others in the building have nicer views and are higher up, but have lower assessments for the same floor space. In particular, he points to Ald. Mike Verveer’s condo two floors above him, which faces the lake instead of the courtyard, and is assessed at $231,000. Like those of all units in the building, its assessed value did not increase from 2005 to 2006.
“Obviously,” Taylor wrote in a letter submitted to the Assessor’s Office, “my second-floor unit’s value should be far less than a fourth-floor unit with a lake view.”
A close look at assessments raises many more questions. Some municipalities, such as Fitchburg reassess properties every 3 to 5 (or longer) years rather than annually as Madison does. Learn more via Access Dane (I do find it odd that some publicly financed data requires a “subscription” – we have the opportunity to pay twice).
Sensenbrenner’s article provides more grist for the consideration of a fall referendum.