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Assessment Procedure

The assessed value placed on a property is based on a physical review. The information determined at that time (square foot, story height, foundation type and amenities) is entered into the appraisal system that calculates a base value according to the State Tax Commission manual. The base value is then adjusted for the county multiplier (bringing the base value to construction costs for Oakland County) and the economic condition factor (ECF-the multiplier for the neighborhood).

A sales study is done for each economic neighborhood and a ratio is determined. General Property Tax Law states assessments are to be at 50% of market value, based on these studies. Oakland County Equalization Department determines the amount of overall adjustment for each class of property (residential, commercial, etc) and applies a factor to the assessments. A factor of 1.00 indicates the assessments are in line with the sales during this one or two-year period.

Assessments may be appealed to the Board of Review.

State law limits the value used to compute property taxes. Therefore, the following information may be helpful in understanding the assessment on property.

  1. Assessed value - Value determined by the local assessor based on real estate sales studies. It should indicate 50% of market value.
  2. State equalized value - The final value calculated by multiplying the assessed value by the equalization factor. The City of Birmingham has a tentative equalization factor of 1.00, meaning the assessed value and the state equalized value are the same.
  3. Capped value - The prior year's taxable value minus any losses (demolition of a structure, etc.) multiplied by the Consumer Price Index (CPI) for the current year, plus any additions (new construction, etc.).
  4. Taxable Value - The value on which property taxes will be computed. This will be the assessed value or capped value, whichever is less.
If there was a transfer of ownership on your property last year, your taxable value for the current year will be the same as your state equalized value. Within 45 days of the transfer, a Property Transfer Affidavit is to be filed with the Assessor under authority of P.A. 415 of 1994. Also, for new purchases, homeowners may claim an exemption for property they own and occupy as their principal residence by completing the homestead affidavit and filing it with the Assessor before June 1st for the summer tax levy, or by November 1st for the winter tax levy per PA 114 of 2012.

If you have a question regarding your assessment, record card for your property or appeal procedure, you may call Oakland County Equalization at 248.858.0776.