MANSFIELD — If you own property in Richland County, you’re likely aware that property values went up recently.
The Richland County Auditor’s Office posted the tentative tax year 2023 reappraisal property values on its website last month.
These reappraisals were ordered by the Ohio Tax Commissioner, as required in Section 5715.33 of the Ohio Revised Code.
Ohio law requires the state tax commissioner to order a reappraisal of all property in each county once every six years. It also allows the commissioner to order a reassessment every three years between reappraisals.
The reappraisal values were calculated by a certified third party vendor, according to Richland County Auditor Patrick Dropsey.
The vendor took into account home sale data, permitting data and data from the county auditor’s office, as well as physically inspecting every parcel in Richland County over the last two and a half years.
While many residents were shocked by the increase in their property’s value, Dropsey said the reappraisal values didn’t come as a surprise.
“Sales activity has been crazy — people spending 100 percent, 200 percent over and above our current values (when purchasing property),” he said.
Dropsey said the most common question his office gets after a reassessment or reappraisal is how much property taxes will go up as a result.
Since reappraisal values won’t be finalized until 2024, it’s hard to say exactly how much taxes will go up for a specific property.
But Dropsey said property taxes aren’t likely to increase as much as property values.
“The question we get most during a reappraisal is, ‘If my property value goes up 30 percent, will my taxes increase 30 percent?'” Dropsey said. “The short answer is no.”
Inside versus outside millage
Every Richland County resident lives in one of 66 taxing districts, depending on their school district, township and city or village of residence.
To understand how changes in property value impact property taxes, it’s important to know the difference between inside and outside millage.
The Ohio Constitution allows each taxing district to collect a maximum 10 mills of unvoted property taxes, also known as inside millage. This tax revenue is divided between school districts, townships, city or village and county governments — depending on where the taxpayer lives.
When property values rise, the amount collected on inside millage also rises because the millage (taxing rate) stays the same.
It’s worth noting that inside millage makes up a small percentage of your overall property tax bill.
This year, inside millage accounts will make up 10.7 to 23 percent of Richland County residents’ total property tax bills, according to the auditor’s office.
The rest of your property tax bill comes from outside millage — levies and bond issues voted on by residents.
“Back in the 1970s, the legislature passed House Bill 920, which restricts voted levies from increasing each year,” Dropsey said.
House Bill 920 essentially “freezes” the amount that can be collected on voted levies to the dollar amount collected in its first year. So when property values go up, the millage is reduced so the tax revenue remains the same.
This means school districts, municipalities and other taxpayer-funded entities don’t see a large boost in funds just because property values rise.
“In essence, voted levies should collect the same amount of money each year, minus delinquencies or new construction,” Dropsey said.
How are property taxes calculated?
Tax rates are calculated in mills. One mill equals $1 in property tax per $1,000 of a property’s taxable (assessed) value.
In Ohio, property is not taxed on its appraised or market value, but on its assessed value. Assessed value is 35 percent of a property’s market value as determined by the reappraisal.
Both of these figures can easily be found by using the property search tool on the Richland County Auditor’s website.
So how much are my property taxes going up?
The Richland County Auditor’s website released a guide on how to estimate your potential increase in real estate taxes next year.
To estimate your increase, look up your property on the Richland County Auditor’s site to determine your taxing district. Then, write down your total assessed value for 2022 and 2023.
After that, refer to this spreadsheet to find out the inside millage for your taxing district.
Next, add a decimal point and a zero to the front of the inside millage percentage and multiply it by both assessed values.
For example, if you reside in taxing district 1, your inside millage calculation is 19.85 percent. Multiply your assessed values by .01985.
The two figures you get are your estimated inside millage taxes for the two taxing years. To find your increase, subtract the 2023 figure from the 2022 figure.
It’s worth noting that the estimate doesn’t take into account homestead reductions or the non-commercial roll-backs many residential owner occupants receive.
The estimate also doesn’t factor in increases from any new levies passed in May or November 2023.
For additional clarification on your tax bill, contact the Richland County Auditor’s office by calling 419-774-5501.