Joburg residents were left fuming last week, after the city’s General Valuation Roll for 2018 saw the value of their property shoot up by 50% – 70%, impacting how much they pay for rates and taxes.
In some cases, property value climbed over 1,000%, making homes unaffordable for owners.
Every four years, the general valuation roll determines the municipal values of homes and the property rates that should be paid based on these values.
The 2018 roll was certified mid-last year, with the City Council of Johannesburg working closely with professional valuers, data collectors and statistical analysts, to deliver on the project.
In July 2017, all 812,000 registered residential properties within the City of Johannesburg were valued using a computer-assisted mass appraisal (CAMA) system, which was done for the purpose of ensuring fairness.
Joburg property values
According to the Lightstone House price index, the total house price inflation in City of Johannesburg from June 2012 to June 2017 is 22.90%.
There has been an average between 3% to 6% each year over the last five years. This is an overall view of the city and analysing each suburb would provide a clearer view of house price growth within that suburb. (Click to enlarge)
This graph shows how the average property price has increased in select suburbs:
The City of Joburg said that property owners within the boundaries of the Joburg metro have the right to inspect the general valuation roll and object to an entry or against an omission from the roll.
To do so, residents should go to the specified page on the city’s website, register, and make their objection known. Residents have until the 6th of April to submit their objections.
Residents can also lodge an objection at their nearest customer service centre, ensuring that they get a reference number or receipt for follow ups. No faxes or emails will be accepted, the City said.
For an objection to be successful, residents will need to provide some evidence to counter the city’s valuation. According to property data and research group, Lightstone, this can done through three methods:
- Automated valuation – based on a recognised analytical model;
- Desktop valuation – where an analyst electronically enters values using online tools; or
- Physical valuation – where a professional valuer visits your property and does a manual assessment.
Lightstone said that its Automated Valuation Report can be used as evidence in any objection to the city’s valuation. The group offers once-off reports for property valuation which cost around R92 per report, and give a market value prediction for the property, an accuracy score, a safety score as well as a price range (high/low).
“A valuation report should be used to understand the price range that a home should be valued within. If it is higher than the municipal valuation, the benefit is that you could sell your home for a lot more, and your asset value has grown substantially,” Lightstone said.
However, it is important that property valuations reflect the true value of a property, as it directly impacts what you pay in rates and taxes, and can also impact the value of the properties around you.
“During the previous round of valuations in 2013 there were cases of property inflation of over more than 100%,” Lightstone said. “A property, for example, was valued at R2.9 million; once an owner objected, it was lowered to R2 million.
“After the appeal process, the property value was eventually settled at R 1.7 million. This could have a very direct effect on the rates and taxes payable each year.”