Thursday, June 14, 2012

New Computer Problems with the Online Appeal

I have received several emails today and I have experienced myself that the Dekalb County online appeal process is not working.  The system will not accept the home owner’s “access code” found at the bottom right hand corner of the ANNUAL NOTICE OF ASSESSMENT.  This is an unfortunate development.  The online appeal process was the only convenient part of the homeowner’s appeal process. Hopefully this is just a temporary problem.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Please Check your "History of Values" on line.

  1. Go to Dekalb County Real Estate Data Search page.
  2. In the "Address" box key in your street number and street name. Click Search.
  3. Look for the link to your property on the next page and click on the link.
  4. On the Property Overview page go to the bottom and click on the "Detailed Property Data" button.
  5. Go to the bottom of the next page and look for "History of Values"
The more feed back I get from Dekalb citizens about their tax assessments; the more I realize that the Appraisals are absolutely bogus. I am now realizing that the errors in the system started in the 2009 to 2010 time frame when values began to drop so rapidly.  It appears that the county began jeer-rigging land values and building values to come up with a total land value.  I wounder if the computer system just was not setup to calculate decreases in values so the county had to manually override the system and manually key in values. This could account for the really bad numbers.  Below is an example of "History of Values" showing numbers in 2008 / 2009 that seem appropriate, but when Total Values begin to decline the the Land and Building Values really became skewed.

      In this example, the "Total Value" for 2010, $204,080 was a 20% decrease in value from 2009.  20% seems like a reasonable decrease in the total property value.  However, if the total property value went down 20% why did the Land Value not decrease by at least 20% if not more?    Back in the rising market gogo days of infill lots (tear-downs), lots in my neighborhood were selling for $250k to $300k. Now is a terrible time to have to sell a lot or home that is obsolete (tear-down).  So lot values are almost nill.  On the other hand, Building Values are actual compressed.  If your house burns completely to the ground, you might be hard pressed to rebuild the same number of square feet for the county's Building Value.
    So for 2010 I believe a more representative valuation from the county would have been 20% decrease in both land (see green arrow above) and building.

20% Percent decrease

Yr 2009
Yr 2010
Land Value 62,600 20% 50,080
Building Value 192,500 20% 154,000
Total Value 255,100

For 2011 I have no idea why the Total Value remained the same, 204,080 but the Land Value went up by 120% to 137,800 and the Building Value went down by 53% to 66,280. (See red arrows above)

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Volunteer to be interviewed NBC News

Media Request - Need volunteer to be interviewed

I spoke with Gabe from NBC News this morning on the phone.  He would like to interview on the phone a home owner with a large 2012 property assessment (See Survey) in Dekalb County.  Please call Gabe direct on his cell phone 404-353-6053. Please feel free to call me if you have any questions 404-784-5400. Thanks in advance. - Harrison

Hi Harrison,
This is my contact information. Please pass along to the person(s) who had that huge increase. My cell is the best way to reach me.
Gabe Gutierrez
NBC Network News
Southeast Region
One Monroe Place, NE
Atlanta, GA 30324
Office: 404-881-3736
Twitter: @gabegutierrez


Wednesday, June 6, 2012



June 7, 2012

Residents Rally From Bookhaven, Northlake To Challenge Appraisals

Some DeKalb homes see assessments soar

June 6, 2012
Some DeKalb homes see assessments soar

June 6, 2012
Decatur Mayor: 1,500 Properties To Be Reassessed

He advises waiting until July 2 to file an appeal with DeKalb County.

June 5, 2012
Tax bills raise hackles Dunwoody

June 4, 2012
Rader: DeKalb Residents Upset Over Property Assessments

In a note to residents, Commissioner Jeff Rader said his office has fielded many complaints about property assessments sent to residents last week

  1. Watch Out! Here Comes the Tax Man! - Tucker, GA Patch
    4 days ago - Most homes in DeKalb County (by a huge percentage) are overvalued for tax ... So, if you think your assessment is higher than the current value of your home ...
  2. Did Your Property Tax Assessment Go Up? - Stone Mountain-Redan ...
    6 days ago - Did Your Property Tax Assessment Go Up? DeKalb County residents are complaining about how their home value is calculated. By Ralph Ellis; Email the author ...

WSB TV Video

Decatur Metro » DeKalb County tax assessment declines
6 days ago - We have calls in to the DeKalb County Tax Assessor's Office to see what information can be provided and will pass that along as soon as possible.

Please fill out our survey.  We plan to go to the county to show that the 2012 assessments are systematically incorrect.  Currently have 128 responses
Average increase is 67%, Median 47%, the High is 360%.


Please appeal your assessment online through the Dekalb County web site.  You have 45 days from the day of Notice.  (June 1st)

Thank you for your interest we currently have 926 Blog Page hits since June 1st.

Dekalb Property Tax Blog

Dekalb Property Tax Blog

Saturday, June 2, 2012


I want to thank everyone for their emails.  The information has been great.  Please share what you are finding by adding a comment to this post.  A lot of you have spoken with the county and it sounds like you are getting pretty much the same response.  The county is acknowledging that they are using a new computer system and they are aware of some problem areas.  This seems a little too vague for an official response.  When I called I got a similar response but the lady I spoke with emphasized that regardless of the problems the county is having, owners need to file an appeal.  If you decide to wait to appeal until the county makes an official response within the next 45 days, you may loose your right to appeal.  If you are reading this blog you have the ability to appeal online.  It's quick and easy.  Also don't forget to check with your neighbors who don't use computers.    

Friday, June 1, 2012

How to Appeal Your 2012
Dekalb County Georgia
Property Tax Assessment
Friday, June 1, 2012

Step by Step Instructions
Dear Dekalb County Neighbor:

I am a residential real estate associate broker with Prudential Georgia Realty and resident of Dekalb County.  I have been inundated with phone calls from clients and neighbors about the “Annual Notice Of Assessment” that were received in the mail over the last couple of days. Residents are complaining that their property assessments have gone up 50 to 90 percent in a stable to declining real estate market.
Dekalb County is a great place to live and it is unfortunate that the County has made such a blunder on the 2012 assessments.  I want to believe that the county Assessor's office has had a major accounting error by not checking the notices before they were mailed to property owners.  The County is now in a position that they must handle tens of thousands of property appeals.

As a property owner, if your assessment has gone up, you must appeal within 45 days of receiving notice in the mail; otherwise, your new assessment stands.  Because the county has so many outrageously inaccurate assessments to deal with, I believe appealing on line is going to be the most efficient way to appeal.  I also believe that if you are just asking for your property assessment to remain the same as 2011 then the County is most likely going to immediately grant your request.  If for some unknown reason the county does not recognize your last year’s value; you still have the opportunity and right to further appeal.
Please check with your family members and neighbors that do not have access to a computer and the internet to see if you can file their appeal for them online.

I filed my appeal online.  It was a quick and painless process.  The hardest part is navigating through all the web pages.  The following pages will give you step by step instructions.  I have included screen shots to make it a little easier to navigate.  Please drop me an email at if you see any improvements that need to be made.  Also please read my required disclosure on the last page.

Hope this is helpful.  

Good luck.

Harrison Rogers

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Tax Assessment Increase Survey

Thursday, May 31st. 

Tax Assessment Increase Survey -

Hello Dekalb Property Owners:

I'm sure you are as shocked by your property tax assessment increase for 2012 as I was. My increase was 90%; more than doubling my property tax for 2012. 

I am a local residential real estate broker and I can assure you that it would be a very rare case if someone’s assessed value would increase in today's market.  

According to the Dekalb appeal process, it is possible that I will have to pay 85% of the new tax value while Dekalb County reviews my appeal. Because my tax is paid through my mortgage company; I will have to ask them not increase my monthly escrow mortgage payment which I estimate to be an additional $230 a month.  They may not be able to do this contractually.

I have created a survey using a "Shared" Google Document.  The link to the document is above.  Please fill in the information on your home if you had an increase.

Once I have a good sampling of data I would like to contact our county officials to request that they resend corrected ANNUAL NOTICE OF ASSESSMENTS so that we can avoid the appeals process all together. 

Thank you for your help.

Harrison Rogers