Inperson Inspections Of Foreclosed Properties On Tap In Miamidade As Appraiser Looks For Accurate Assessed Values
Written by Yudislaidy Fernandez on January 14, 2010
By Yudislaidy Fernandez
Miami-Dade Property Appraiser Pedro Garcia has deployed expert personnel to do in-person inspections of all foreclosed properties to make sure assessed values this year reflect true property conditions, he says.
As the county’s first elected property appraiser, Mr. Garcia says one of the major complaints he got from struggling property owners last year was that the assessed value tagged on the property didn’t mirror actual value.
With Miami-Dade badly bruised by the foreclosure fiasco, angry property owners, upset at losing their properties, often dismantle them before turning in the keys, stripping appliances, cabinets and countertops, air-conditioning units and plumbing. In other cases, Mr. Garcia said, the vacated homes become targets of vandals as they often sit empty for months.
The result? Thousands of properties throughout Miami-Dade are at risk of becoming eyesores, he said.
Last year, Mr. Garcia was criticized by some property owners for disregarding foreclosure sales in his calculations to determine taxable values because he said those properties didn’t reflect true market value.
With the goal of personally inspecting foreclosed properties in the county this year — where there are more than 110,000 open foreclosure cases — Mr. Garcia says he is sending special crews to conduct thorough inspections of foreclosed properties to make sure "that the value is as close as possible to reality."
The property appraiser’s office also has the help of an outside company it contracted to help inspect these distressed properties. The county has the task of assessing values on more than 800,000 properties.
The gathered information on foreclosed properties is to help Mr. Garcia establish the property’s value based on the identified conditions and establish how much owners will have to invest in a property to get it up to par with surrounding properties.
"What we will do," he said, "is we will try to establish what kind of expense the owner will have to put into the property to put it at the same level of other properties in the neighborhood."