Worth property owners have had a few weeks now to examine the new data from the Cook County Assessor’s Office (“CCAO”) so we’re taking a closer look at it.
The Assessor has stated that in 2020 it will reassess every property in the Cook County region due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Because of this, the Assessor’s 2020 estimated property values in the region are significantly lower than the 2019 sales data.
Worth Township surrounds large portions of Oak Lawn, Evergreen Park, Chicago Heights, Palos Heights, Crestwood, Alsip, and Merrionette Park.
Here are some high level stats for Worth Township in 2020 as reported by the Assessor:
|Property Type||Median Estimated Value|
|Single Family Homes||$171,270|
|2-6 Unit Apartments||$268,490|
Although the CCAO applied a significant COVID-19 adjustment in Worth, the estimated values for many single-family homes were increased as compared to the previous assessment numbers from 2017. Presumably this is because the median sale prices as reported by the CCAO increased from $176,000 to $196,000, negating property owner benefit from the COVID-19 adjustment.
Because of this, the 2020 median estimated value of $171,270 for single family homes is almost unchanged from 2017’s $171,600.
In reference to the COVID-19 adjustment, the CCAO reported that:
The CCAO estimated unemployment in each of Worth’s neighborhoods and then created a COVID-19 Adjustment for each single-family homes[sic] and condos[sic] in each neighborhood. Neighborhoods with higher estimated unemployment had larger adjustments.
The CCAO applied the COVID-19 adjustment according to estimated unemployment changes, which presumably increased differences between neighborhoods. The reported unemployment estimates ranged from approximately 11% to 16%, which the CCAO transformed into COVID-19 property value adjustments of about -10% to -12%.
The CCAO’s changes this year were particularly sensitive to property location - they were dramatically different across the Worth Township. The range in property value adjustment was greater than 50% across neighborhoods: the CCAO lowered median estimated values in neighborhood 340 by 39.1% and simultaneously raised them in neighborhood 220 by 20.5%.
The following map illustrates these changes geographically (lowered assessed values in red and raised values in blue):
The CCAO calculates statistical benchmarks to determine if its valuations are fair. These benchmarks fall under two types:
- “Horizontal equity” means that similar properties have similar assessed values
- “Vertical equity” means that low-value and high-value properties are similarly assessed
The CCAO reported that it met their standard for horizontal equity for the Worth Township this year.
The CCAO reported that it did not meet its measure of success for vertical equity in Worth Township in either of two statistical measures:
- The Price-Related Differential (PRD) for Worth was greater than 1.03 (outside the target range of .98 to 1.03).
- The Price-Related Bias (PRB) for Worth was -13.91% (outside the target range of -5% to 5%).
Both measures indicate that the CCAO assessed less expensive properties higher than what their sale prices indicated.
Although the CCAO met their standard for horizontal equity, year over year changes in estimated values had a surprisingly wide range between many similar properties, which may lead to surprise tax bills for some residents. For instance, more than 300 properties with no property class or square footage changes saw building assessed values increase by more than 50%.
Worth Township 2020 Appeals
The CCAO mailed reassessment notices to Worth Township property owners on June 17, 2020.
Property owners have until July 23, 2020 to appeal this reassessment. This could change as the CCAO has moved back some of Township due dates this year.