House Bill 211 — Property value, assessment

House Bill 211 — Property value, assessment

by
Parrish Miller
February 21, 2021

Bill Description: House Bill 211 allows a residential property owner to appeal a county tax assessment based on the owner's arms-length transaction within the previous 12 months.

Rating: +1

Analyst Note: House Bill 211 is almost identical to House Bill 561a from 2020, which passed both chambers by significant margins, yet was vetoed by the governor. 

Does it directly or indirectly create or increase any taxes, fees, or other assessments? Conversely, does it eliminate or reduce any taxes, fees, or other assessments?

House Bill 211 amends Section 63-501A, Idaho Code, to give a residential property owner the ability to appeal a county tax assessment based on "a documented sales price from the arm's-length transaction completed within the previous twelve (12) months by which the current owner obtained his current ownership of the residential property whose assessment is being appealed."

In such a case, "the documented sales price establishes the market value for assessment purposes of the property."

The appeal is optional, as it reveals the price paid for the house. New language says, "Nothing in this subsection requires the disclosure of a documented sales price relating to the real property by any individual or entity."

One notable shortcoming of this bill is that the statute applies only to the sales price in an "arm's-length transaction … by which the current owner obtained his current ownership of the residential property whose assessment is being appealed." That is, it does not apply to the sales price in any transaction involving the property. This limitation inserts a degree of subjectivity into the law that will disqualify some buyers from benefiting from reduced property taxes. 

It should also be noted that because an appeal is only allowed for a transaction within the previous 12 months, a successful appeal would only reduce the property taxes owed for a single year. 

(+1)

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