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Thursday, September 18, 2014 |  Madison, WI: 58.0° F  A Few Clouds
The Daily
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Madison's 2013 property assessments released, values see a slight increase
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Madison's taxable property is now worth just under $20.4 billion, about a 1% increase over last year.

Of the city's 73,793 parcels, 40% are seeing a change in assessment in 2013 (PDF) -- with 7,220 increasing in value and 22,458 decreasing. It's the first time property values have seen a collective increase since 2009, says Mark Hanson, the city's assessor.

Residential properties continue to decline, dropping about .5%, but increases in commercial development made up for that drop with a 3.7% increase.

"The big jumps there were the apartments," says Hanson, noting they increased on average about 10%.

The city saw $221 million in new construction, including $90 million in new residential construction and $131 million in commercial construction.

The neighborhood that was the biggest loser was Burr Oaks, on the city's south side, which dropped 13%. Some neighborhoods on the northeast side -- Heather Downs, Northport, Sherman and Park Ridge -- declined around 5%, Hanson says.

The high rate of foreclosures is driving these property drops, says Hanson. "In these north and northeast neighborhoods, many of these were first-time homebuyers and maybe it wasn't the best time for them to purchase and now they're losing their homes."

Hanson says he doesn't know if there's much the city can do to affect the drop in property values. "Obviously the city wants to help in anyway it can," he says. "But the economics of home buying and selling, they are what they are."

Condos also took a hit, declining about 2.7%. This reflects a bad market. "If there's too many renters in a complex or if the association isn't in good standing, banks won't even lend on them."

The neighborhoods with the biggest gains are Orton Park and Wil-Mar on the east side, which both increased about 5%. University Heights and Hill Farms both went up about 2%.

Hanson expects that the upward trend will continue as the market recovery continues. "The volume of sales is up significantly. The inventory of properties for sale has gone down," he says. "It's not just a buyers market anymore. Those are positives."

The total value of the city's property is probably more than $30 billion, Hanson says. The assessor's office doesn't calculate the value of government and non-profit properties, which are not taxed.

Property assessments are being mailed and are also available online. Property owners have until 1:30 p.m. on Monday, May 13 to appeal their assessments. More information on how is detailed in a city news release.

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