Missoula County Clerk and Treasurer Tyler Gernant appeared on Talk Back on Wednesday to help listeners with questions about the property assessment notices recently sent out by the Montana Department of Revenue.

Gernant explained that the reassessments were sent out every six years until recently.

“In 2015, there was the first two year appraisal, and the primary reason for that was there was an appraisal process that happened right before the Great Recession in 2008 and 2009 which captured these really high values in comparison to what the values were after the recession,” said Gernant. “I think the legislature saw that and thought it wasn’t particularly fair that these values were captured and they affected your property for the next six years, even though there was a downturn.”

Gernant offered advice for those who dispute the property appraisal value set by the Department of Revenue.

“The first thing that I recommend doing is finding out what the assessment data actually is,” he said. “One of the most common things that happen is as a reason for why your property value is not correct is because the Department of Revenue has something wrong about your house. They might have an extra bedroom, they might have your square footage as being 1,500 square feet when it’s only 1,000 square feet. So, you want to look at that and find out whether or not everything listed on there is accurate.”

Gernant pointed listeners to where to find out that critical data.

“If you go to Missoula Property dot US, it’s a GIS mapping feature that the county has and we take all that downloaded data from the Department of Revenue,” he said. “If you look up your property, there’s a little information box on the right hand side of your screen and there will be a little box that is labeled CAMA, the CAMA data. If you click on that box it’s going to pull up all of your assessment data which shows you the square footage of your house, how many bedrooms and bathrooms and the grade of your house which is a function of its age.”

The property assessment notice is not a tax bill, but it is part of the formula that helps determine your property taxes.

The number to contact the Missoula office of the Montana Department of Revenue is 329-1400.

Click this link to get more information about the website that Tyler Gernant referenced on Talk Back.

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