April 24, 2014

Chester Selectmen Pick Waterbury Firm for 2012 Property Evaluation

CHESTER— The board of selectmen has picked a Waterbury firm, EQuality Valuation Services, to complete the townwide property revaluation that will be done in 2013, a full revaluation that will include physical inspections of all residential, commercial, and industrial properties.

EQuality Valuation Services was the lowest of four bids reviewed by the board at a meeting Tuesday. The bid price was $60,000, though First Selectman Edmund Meehan noted Wednesday some computer upgrades needed for the process would add a small amount to the total cost. Also submitting bids were Vision Appraisal of Northboro, Mass., Tyler Technologies of Norwich, and Municipal Valuation Services of Fairfield.

The Waterbury firm had done the revaluation update completed in 2008, a statistical update that included a data mailer sent to property owners. The last full revaluation in Chester, including a review of real estate sales combined with inspections of all properties, was done in 2003.

Meehan said inspections of properties would begin in the spring of 2003, with the revaluation to be completed for the October 2013 grand list. Residents are expected to receive new value notices for their properties in November 2013.

The 2008 revaluation update, done just before the economic crash in the fall of 2008, brought an increase in the grand list of taxable property. MeehanĀ  acknowledged a drop in the grand list is likely, given the continuing slow economy and the decline in residential property values over the last four years. “Knowing the real estate market it’s a fair conclusion there will be a decrease, how much we just don’t know,” he said. The revalued 2013 grand list will be used to set the tax rate for the 2014-2015 budget year.