The city’s property revaluation is speedily moving forward with 49-percent of the properties having been visited by inspectors, according to representatives of Appraisal Systems, the company contracted to revaluate all properties within city limits.
“As of today, we’ve visited 49-percent [of properties],” said Rick DelGuercio, president of the company. “And we’ve been able to get into approximately half of those.”
Rick DelGuercio said that percentage translates to 8,800 properties. When an inspector does not find the owner on site to show the inside of the property, he makes an assessment of the property’s exterior, and leaves behind a yellow notice with phone number requesting the owner call the number to schedule an inspection.
If a property owner schedules appointments and is a no show repeatedly, the inspector estimates the property’s value. A blue card, estimate card, is left on the door, informing the owner that the company has estimated the property’s value.
Rick DelGuercio said the company has been sending field representatives throughout the city to make assessments; however it has not yet begun in the 4th Ward. “We haven’t gotten into the 4th Ward yet,” said Glen Sherman, vice-president of the company.
Deviating slightly from the discussion Anthony Davis, 1st Ward councilman, asked: “Are there possibilities of hiring Patersonians?”
“We’ve been attempting to do that right from the start,” responded Rick DelGuercio.
Davis further probed asking where city residents can go to apply for positions. Sherman said the company has posted the positions on Monster.com; and it has several city residents working as field representatives.
“Guys, apply,” said Davis to a packed audience in the council chamber. The company should send Patersonians to handle the 4th Ward assessments, said Kenneth Morris, councilman at-large, jokingly.
The crammed city council chamber roared in laughter when company representatives said they have yet to inspect properties in the 4th Ward as if recognizing the dangers that lurk in that section of the city.
Ernest DelGuercio, chief executive officer at the company, explained the city’s property value has dropped by 25-percent or is over-valued by that percentage. “A property that’s assessed for $125,000 sells for $100,000,” said Ernest DelGuercio.
“The state constitution calls for all real estate in New Jersey to be assessed at 100% percent of true market value,” said Ernest DelGuercio. True value means the price a willing buyer and a willing seller are willing to strike a deal over, said Ernest DelGuercio.
“All properties must be assessed at 100% of their true market value and by the same standard which means uniformity, so all people are paying their fair share, no more, no less,” said Ernest Del Guercio.
With a botched tax revaluation in 2007, Andre Sayegh, 6th Ward councilman, asked whether the tax assessor’s office is ready and prepared to make sure this one goes as planned.
“We’re gearing up at the tax assessor’s office to perform and maintain the assessment as it goes forward,” said Richard Marra, tax assessor. “We have a pretty good staff right now. We have plans of adding a few more staff.”
Rick DelGuercio said the company will finish with the revaluation in the 1st quarter of 2015.