Wednesday, May 3, 2017


The average property tax assessment under the recent revaluation increased by about 25%, but the average tax bill is actually going down slightly, according to Township Tax Assessor Edward Galante, who updated the Township Committee Tuesday on the findings.

During a lengthy discussion about the recent revaluation, which was ordered by Essex County, Galante revealed that the average assessed value of a Maplewood home increased from $398,800 to $496,000. But the average tax paid will dip slightly from $14,695 to $14,532.

That is due to the fact, of course, that each home is assessed differently based on its value. And, as Galante explained, each is assessed on its individual merits and on the basis of its market rate.

"We have to assess everything to its fair market value," Galante said, later adding, "We are basing all new assessments in each neighborhood in town on current sales that have occurred in those places ... the object is to get everybody to the current market value for assessment purposes to make the tax burden as fair as possible based on that."

He also distributed a map of assessments provided by Apprasial Systems Inc, which conducted the reassessment. It can be found on the ASI website HERE and will be posted on the Township site.

The map indicated that most neighborhoods saw an average decrease in taxes, ranging from as little as 0.71% to 31%. But, in some cases, certain neighborhoods average increases of up to 15%.

For example, most of the College Hill neighborhood -- loosely bordered by Tuscan Road, Valley Street, Park Avenue and Springfield Avenue -- saw its average assessment increase from $446,600 to $559,700. But the average tax actually dipped from $16,457 to $16,368. This is due to some individual homes with improvements or additions seeing large increases, while others might have seen smaller decreases. 

In another case, across Springfield Avenue in the Hilton neighborhood -- loosely bordered by Springfield Avenue, Laurel Avenue, Burnett Avenue and Vermont Street -- the average assessment jumped from $238,700 to $306,100. But the average tax also increased from $8,796 to $8,952.

Again, the average change is based on a variety of homes, some with increases and others decreases.

Overall, Galante noted, Maplewood's residential assessed value jumped from $2.728 billion to $3.416 billion. The new taxes will be reflected in the third quarter tax bills in August.

See Galante's presentation and the TC discussion below:

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