December 21, 2014

Medina
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Drop slows for county’s property values

To see how home values have changed in each city, township and village, click here

David Knox | The Gazette

Real estate values in Medina County slipped an average of 3.5 percent in the past three years, according to the new property reappraisal completed by the county auditor.

The good news? The drop was half as much as the decline reported in the previous three years and the prices of homes sold this year are climbing again — indications that the housing market is finally recovering after the collapse in home prices in 2008-09.

“We are seeing appreciation is home values in Medina County again, no question,” county Auditor Michael E. Kovack said.

Details of the reappraisal are scheduled to be released at 11 a.m. today.

A full reappraisal, which includes viewings of the county’s nearly 82,000 parcels of property to ensure the auditor’s property descriptions are accurate, is required by Ohio law every six years. An update — based on an evaluation of property sales prices — is required three years after a reappraisal.

The last update, which covered 2007 to 2009, found the average home values in the county dropped by an average of 7 percent. Agricultural property decreased on average by 4.5 percent, and commercial and industrial properties were stagnant.

Kovack said that was the first decline ever in the county.

While the new reappraisal found less of a drop in average property values, Kovack said the declines ranged widely among the county’s 52 taxing districts. While homes in the county’s three cities — Brunswick, Medina and Wadsworth — saw declines averaging 6 to 8 percent, some fast-growing townships showed much smaller dips.

“Hinckley, Granger and Sharon (townships) went down the least — only 1 or 2 percent,” the auditor said.

Declines in property values mean smaller real estate tax bills.

But the decline will be small because Ohio law requires county auditors to adjust the tax rates on most levies approved by voters to compensate for changes in values. That means when values go up, the “effective millage” does down. Conversely, when values drop, the effective millage is nudged up.

Only the unvoted “inside millage” is unchanged and collects less when values go down.

The new values will be mailed in the next couple months to provide property owners an opportunity to appeal.

Hearings to contest the appraisals will be scheduled.

The new values won’t be finalized until approved by the state and won’t affect tax bills until next year.

Contact David Knox at (330) 721-4065 or dknox@medina-gazette.com.