El Paso News

Special Report: Million-Dollar Appraisals

(KTSM) - A deep dive into El Paso's 2018 property appraisals shows some of the Sun City's priciest homes didn't see the same average valuation increase as many of the county's smaller residences.

El Paso has 51 homes valued at more than $1 million, according to local journalist Bob Moore who requested the appraisal data for all of the roughly 197,000 residential properties in the county.

"I don't see a lot of advertisements for million dollar-homes, so I would've thought maybe we have 20 or 30 of them," Moore told KTSM. "I was surprised to see 51 of them."

Moore said he was also surprised to learn that those living at the top are seeing a smaller jump in home value than many other property owners in the city.

The El Paso Central Appraisal District (CAD) has reported valuations are up an average of 7 percent this year.

Looking at Moore's data, the homes valued in the top 1 percent (some worth more than $2 million) saw an average property value spike of about 5.7 percent, below the average.

But homes valued in the bottom 1 percent saw an average increase of about 13 percent, according to the numbers.

"The lower end of the home valuation range is getting a higher piece of tax burden, and the people at the top are getting a lower tax burden," Moore said.

CAD Chief Appraiser Dinah Kilgore said it's important to note that the housing market drives a lot of the valuation process. The hotter the sales in a neighborhood or part of town, the higher the jumps in valuation.

Kilgore told KTSM lower-cost homes simply sell more often in El Paso, making it easier to appraise residences similar in size or age.

"When you get into your higher-end homes, your close to million-dollar homes, it's a slower market," she said. "It takes longer to sell them."

Property owners wishing to protest their valuations have until Tuesday, May 15 or 30 days from the date of their valuation notice to do so. You can visit the CAD's protest page here.

 


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