Friday, April 12, 2019 - 12:55pm

The City Assessor is responsible for the assessment process including: (1) Discovering all real and personal property that is subject to tax unless exempted by law; (2) Listing all property characteristics used to determine value; and (3) Valuing all property subject to property tax. Creating and maintaining an accurate assessment roll (list of all taxable property: address, value, and owner) fulfills the first requirement. Sustaining property record cards with correct characteristics and information satisfies the second requirement. Accurate valuation, the final requirement, entails estimating the market value of all locally assessable property in the City. These values are used when establishing property taxes next December. In Madison, all property is valued annually at 100% of market value as of January 1.

For the purpose of taxation, property falls into two categories: real estate and personal property. Within these broad categories, there are several delineations of property. Real estate includes single family homes, condominiums, apartment buildings, commercial, and agricultural properties. Personal property consists of furniture, fixtures, and other types of property used in the course of business or commerce. Real estate and personal property are assessed by the City Assessor and represent approximately 98% of the property tax base. The remaining 2% of the tax base is manufacturing property valued by the Wisconsin Department of Revenue.

Real Estate Changes
Locally assessed real estate increased 6.4% for 2019. Commercial property has increased 6.5% ($9,748 to $10,386 million) and residential assessments increased 6.3% ($16,794 to $17,851 million).

Personal Property Changes
Locally assessed personal property assessments increased by $35 million between 2018 and 2019. This represents a 6.9% increase from $507 to $542 million.

Manufacturing Assessments
Manufacturing assessments prepared by the State will not be available until June 1. Last year these assessments totaled $347 million ($261.1 million on real estate and $85.9 million on personal property).

Recap of Local Changes
A recap of the locally assessed valuation changes in millions shows that real estate increased 6.4% and personal property increased 6.9% for an overall increase of 6.4%. This means a $1,731.5 million local increase in tax base.  The following delineates that amount with specific categories (change is listed in $ millions):

  • New Construction - $606.3
  • Revaluations - $1,092.0
  • Annexations - $1.2
  • Real Estate Exemptions ($8.5)
  • Buildings Removed ($4.1)
  • Property Formerly Exempt, Now Assessed - $9.6
  • Personal Property - $35.0

A comprehensive report is available including tables that focus on the compositions and rates of locally assessed real estate growth. That report can be found here: located under the "Reports" tab.