Property Valuation and Classification Appeals
Estimated Market Value
Estimated market value is the amount the assessor estimates a buyer would pay for your property if it were offered for sale. Each year the assessor reviews the market valuation of your property to determine if changes in the real estate market or improvements to your property require a change in the estimated market value.
Classification & Class Rates
All property is classified by the assessor according to its use. Each class of property (home, apartment, cabin, farm, business) is taxed at a different percentage of its value. This percentage, or class rate, is determined by the state legislature. Like market value, the class rate of your property plays a significant role in how much property tax you pay.
Each spring, the assessor will mail you a Valuation of Real Property Notice informing you of the value and classification of your property. If you believe the classification or the estimated market value of your property is incorrect, you have several appeal options. The first step is to do some research.
Do Your Research
Begin by visiting the assessor’s office.
- Verify information about your property, such as its dimensions, age and condition of its structures.
- Review records to determine the market value of similar property in your neighborhood.
- Review sales data to find out what similar property in your area is selling for.
- Check real estate ads in your newspaper to get an idea of the asking price of local properties.
- Ask the assessor to explain the criteria used for classifying your property. You may also review the classification of other property used in the same manner as yours.
Appealing Your Assessment
You have the right to appeal your market value estimate and/or property classification if you feel your property is:
- Classified improperly
- Valued at an amount higher than you could sell your property for
- Valued at a level different from similar property in your area
You can appeal to your local and county Boards of Appeal and Equalization or you can take your appeal directly to the Minnesota Tax Court. Or you can choose both options, in which case begin with the local Board of Appeal and Equalization.
Local Board of Appeal & Equalization
If you choose to appeal to your local boards, first meet with your city or town Board of Appeal and Equalization. These are usually the same people as your city or town council. The board meets on a specified day in April or May. The exact date is listed on your Valuation of Real Property Notice. We strongly recommend that you call the Wright County Assessor’s Office at 763-682-7367 to schedule your appearance.
You may make your appeal in person, by letter, or have someone else appear for you. The assessor will be present to answer questions. You must present your case to the city or town board before going to the County Board of Appeal and Equalization.
Attend the Open Book meeting
An Open Book meeting, is an informal meeting that will be held on April 6, 2017 from 3 to 7 p.m. at the Wright County Assessor's Office. This is your opportunity to meet with the property appraiser for your area and ask questions about the value and classification of your property.
Districts in Wright County that have opted for the Open Book meeting option are the cities of Buffalo, Clearwater, Cokato, Maple Lake, Monticello, South Haven and the Township of Silver Creek.
All other cities and townships in Wright County will hold their own Local Board of Appeal and Equalization meeting. The date and time for each meeting is printed on your Valuation of Real Property Notice.
You do not have to wait for the Open Book meeting or for the Local Board of Equalization to speak with your property appraiser. If you have a question about the value or classification of your property, call the Assessor's Office at 763 682-7367. Many times value and classification issues can be taken care of prior to a formal appeal by speaking with the appraiser for your area.
If you have not resolved your value or classification issues with the property assessor, you may appeal to the County Board of Appeal and Equalization. You must call the Auditor's Office at 763 682-7578 for an appointment at this meeting. The County Board of Appeal and Equalization will take place on June 12, 2017 at the Wright County Government Center in the Commissioner's Board room.
County Board of Appeal and Equalization
If you are not satisfied with the decision of the city or town board, you may appeal to the County Board of Appeal and Equalization. You must present your case to the city or town board before going to the County Board of Appeal and Equalization.
This board meets in June. The exact date is listed on your Valuation of Real Property Notice. The members are usually the county board of commissioners or their appointees. You must call the Wright County Auditor at 763-682-7578 to schedule your appearance before the board.
You may make your appeal in person, by letter or have someone else appear for you. The assessor will be present to answer questions.
If you are not satisfied with the decision of the County Board of Appeal and Equalization, you may appeal to the Minnesota Tax Court.
Minnesota Tax Court
You have until April 30 of the year the tax becomes payable to appeal your assessment to the Minnesota Tax Court. In other words, you must appeal your 2013 valuation and classification on or before April 30, 2014.
The Tax Court has two divisions, the Small Claims Division and the Regular Division.
Small Claims Division
The Small Claims Division only hears appeals involving one of the following situations:
- The assessor’s estimated market value of your property is less than $300,000
- Your entire parcel is classified as a residential homestead (1a or 1b) and the parcel contains no more than one dwelling unit
- Your entire property is classified as an agricultural homestead (1b or 2a)
- Appeals involving the denial of a current year application for homestead classification of your property
- The regular division will hear all appeals–including those within the jurisdiction of the small claims division. Decisions made here can be appealed to a higher court
- Most people who appeal to the regular division hire an attorney because the hearing is conducted according to the Minnesota rules of civil procedure
Minnesota Tax Court
Minnesota Judicial Center
25 Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd.
St. Paul, MN 55115