State Tax Commission of Missouri
|JOSEPH & JERI MICHAEL TRUST||)|
|v.||)||Appeal Number 16-62506|
|CONNIE HOOVER, ASSESSOR,||)|
|JASPER COUNTY, MISSOURI,||)|
DECISION AND ORDER
The assessment made by the Board of Equalization of Jasper County is AFFIRMED. The totality of the evidence adduced by the parties was not substantial and persuasive evidence to overcome the presumption of correct valuation by the Jasper County Board of Equalization (BOE).
Assessed value for the subject property for tax year 2016 is set at $387,810 ($2,041,150 True Value) residential.
Complainant appeared by counsel Brett Roubal.
Respondent appeared by attorney Norman Rouse.
Case heard and decided by Senior Hearing Officer John Treu.
Complainant appealed on the ground of overvaluation. The value as of January 1 of the odd numbered year remains the value as of January 1 of the following even numbered year unless there is new construction or improvement to the property. Section 137.115.1 RSMo The State Tax Commission (STC) takes this appeal to determine the true value in money for the subject property as the property existed on January 1, 2016, under the economic conditions for January 1, 2015.
The Hearing Officer, having considered all of the competent evidence upon the whole record, enters the following Decision and Order.
FINDINGS OF FACT
- Jurisdiction. Jurisdiction over this appeal is proper. Complainant timely appealed to the State Tax Commission.
- Evidentiary Hearing. The Evidentiary Hearing was held on January 15, 2017 at the Jasper County Courthouse, Carthage, Missouri.
- Identification of Subject Property. The subject property is identified by parcel/locator number 16-8.0-33-00-000-099.000. It is further identified as 1336 Northridge Circle, Joplin, Jasper County, Missouri (Exhibit A and Exhibit 1).
- Description of Subject Property. The subject residential property consists of a tract of land of 12.8 acres, improved by a single family colonial style home in very good condition, with an above grade gross living area of 11,294 square feet. Amenities include a tennis court, a fitness building, 4 bedrooms, 5 full bathrooms, 2 half bathrooms an upstairs wet bar, an upstairs maids kitchen, 4,181 square feet of finished basement, a basement family room, basement game room, basement theater room, basement exercise room, basement wet bar and an outdoor playground. The home was built in 2004. (Exhibit A and Exhibit 1).
- Assessment and BOE. The Assessor set a true value on the subject property at $2,041,150, residential classification. The BOE sustained the true value at $2,041,150. (Complaint for Review of Assessment).
- Complainant’s Evidence. Complainant offered Exhibits A and B which were received into evidence. Such consisted of:
|Exhibit A||Appraisal of Christopher Faubion|
|Exhibit B||WDT of Christopher Faubion & Dr. Michael Joseph|
The effective date of the appraisal was 5/31/2016. Complainant’s appraiser testified that he could not give an opinion of value of the subject property as of 1/1/2015 unless he did a new analysis.
Complainant’s appraiser conducted both a cost approach and sales comparison approach to value the property. Under the cost approach Complainant’s appraiser concluded on an indicated value of $2,538,777. Under the sales comparison approach Complainant’s appraiser concluded on an indicated value of $1,400,000. Under this approach Complainant’s appraiser utilized 6 comparable sales. The adjusted sales prices ranged from $1,088,975 to $1,911,550. The comparables sold between 12/30/2014 and 1/8/2016. Both comparables 1 and 6 sold on 12/30/2014; however, Complainant’s appraiser gave it little consideration to comparable 6. For comparable 6 the net adjustment percentage was over 100% and the gross adjustment percentage was over 100%. For comparables 4 & 5, both in Springfield, MO, Complainant’s appraiser made a negative location adjustment of $45,000. Complainant’s appraiser made adjustments based upon differentials between the subject property and the comparables. Exhibit A
- Respondent’s Evidence. Respondent offered into evidence Exhibits 1 and 2 which were received into evidence without objection. Such consisted of:
|Exhibit 1||Appraisal of George Buckley|
|Exhibit 2||WDT of George Buckley|
The effective date of Respondent’s appraisal was 1/1/2015. Respondent’s appraiser testified he did not have access to MLS data for Joplin, MO where the subject property is located.
Respondent’s appraiser conducted both a cost approach and sales comparison approach to value the property. Under the cost approach Respondent’s appraiser concluded on an indicated value of $2,510,700. Under the sales comparison approach Respondent’s appraiser concluded on an indicated value of $2,000,000. Under this approach Respondent’s appraiser utilized 5 comparable sales. The adjusted sales prices ranged from $1,448,240 to $2,772,700. The comparables sold between 5/22/2013 and 2/17/2015. Comparables 1, located in Springfield, MO sold on 1/8/2015 for an adjusted sales price of 2,772,700. Comparable 5 located in Lampe, MO sold on 2/17/15 for an adjusted sales price of 2,259,370. Respondent’s appraiser made no location adjustments to any of his comparables contending that all the markets were similar. For comparable 1 the net adjustment percentage was 10.91% and the gross adjustment percentage was 13.93%. Respondent’s appraiser made adjustments based upon differentials between the subject property and the comparables. Exhibit 1
- Presumption of Correct Assessment Not Rebutted. The totality of the evidence was not substantial and persuasive to rebut the presumption of correct assessment and establish the true value in money as of January 1, 2015. Consequently, the true market value set by the Jasper County Board of Equalization is AFFIRMED.
CONCLUSIONS OF LAW AND DECISION
The Commission has jurisdiction to hear this appeal and correct any assessment which is shown to be unlawful, unfair, arbitrary or capricious. The Hearing Officer shall issue a decision and order affirming, modifying or reversing the determination of the Board of Equalization, and correcting any assessment which is unlawful, unfair, improper, arbitrary, or capricious. Article X, Section 14, Mo. Const. of 1945; Sections 138.430, 138.431, 138.431.4, RSMo.
Basis of Assessment
The Constitution mandates that real property and tangible personal property be assessed at its value or such percentage of its value as may be fixed by law for each class and for each subclass. Article X, Sections 4(a) and 4(b), Mo. Const. of 1945. The constitutional mandate is to find the true value in money for the property under appeal. By statute real and tangible personal property are assessed at set percentages of true value in money. Section 137.115.5, RSMo – residential property at 19% of true value in money.
Presumption In Appeal
There is a presumption of validity, good faith and correctness of assessment by the County Board of Equalization. Hermel, Inc. v. STC, 564 S.W.2d 888, 895 (Mo. banc 1978); Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railroad Co. v. STC, 436 S.W.2d 650, 656 (Mo. 1968); May Department Stores Co. v. STC, 308 S.W.2d 748, 759 (Mo. 1958). This presumption is a rebuttable rather than a conclusive presumption. It places the burden of going forward with some substantial evidence on the taxpayer – Complainant.
Complainant’s Burden of Proof
In order to prevail, Complainant must present an opinion of market value and substantial and persuasive evidence that the proposed value is indicative of the market value of the subject property on January 1, 2015. Hermel, supra. There is no presumption that the taxpayer’s opinion is correct. The taxpayer in a Commission appeal still bears the burden of proof. The taxpayer is the moving party seeking affirmative relief. Therefore, the Complainant bears the burden of proving the vital elements of the case, i.e., the assessment was “unlawful, unfair, improper, arbitrary or capricious.” See, Westwood Partnership v. Gogarty, 103 S.W.3d 152 (Mo. App. E.D. 2003); Daly v. P. D. George Co., 77 S.W.3d 645 (Mo. App. E.D. 2002); Reeves v. Snider, 115 S.W.3d 375 (Mo. App. S.D. 2003).
Weight to be Given Evidence
The Hearing Officer is not bound by any single formula, rule or method in determining true value in money, but is free to consider all pertinent facts and estimates and give them such weight as reasonably they may be deemed entitled. The relative weight to be accorded any relevant factor in a particular case is for the Hearing Officer to decide. St. Louis County v. Security Bonhomme, Inc., 558 S.W.2d 655, 659 (Mo. banc 1977); St. Louis County v. STC, 515 S.W.2d 446, 450 (Mo. 1974); Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railroad Company v. STC, 436 S.W.2d 650 (Mo. 1968).
The Hearing Officer as the trier of fact may consider the testimony of an expert witness and give it as much weight and credit as he may deem it entitled to when viewed in connection with all other circumstances. The Hearing Officer is not bound by the opinions of experts who testify on the issue of reasonable value, but may believe all or none of the expert’s testimony and accept it in part or reject it in part. St. Louis County v. Boatmen’s Trust Co., 857 S.W.2d 453, 457 (Mo. App. E.D. 1993); Vincent by Vincent v. Johnson, 833 S.W.2d 859, 865 (Mo. 1992); Beardsley v. Beardsley, 819 S.W.2d 400, 403 (Mo. App. 1991); Curnow v. Sloan, 625 S.W.2d 605, 607 (Mo. banc 1981).
Standard for Valuation
Section 137.115, RSMo, requires that property be assessed based upon its true value in money which is defined as the price a property would bring when offered for sale by one willing or desirous to sell and bought by one who is willing or desirous to purchase but who is not compelled to do so. Missouri Baptist Children’s Home v. State Tax Commission, 867 S.W.2d 510, 512 (Mo. banc 1993). True value in money is defined in terms of value in exchange and not value in use. Daly v. P. D. George Company, et al, 77 S.W.3d 645, 649 (Mo. App E.D. 2002), citing, Equitable Life Assurance Society v. STC, 852 S.W.2d 376, 380 (Mo. App. 1993); citing, Stephen & Stephen Properties, Inc. v. STC, 499 S.W.2d 798, 801-803 (Mo. 1973).
It is the fair market value of the subject property on the valuation date. Hermel, supra.
Market value is the most probable price in terms of money which a property should bring in a competitive and open market under all conditions requisite to a fair sale, the buyer and seller, each acting prudently, knowledgeable and assuming the price is not affected by undue stimulus.
Implicit in this definition are the consummation of a sale as of a specific date and the passing of title from seller to buyer under conditions whereby:
- Buyer and seller are typically motivated.
- Both parties are well informed and well advised, and both acting in what they consider their own best interests.
- A reasonable time is allowed for exposure in the open market.
- Payment is made in cash or its equivalent.
- Financing, if any, is on terms generally available in the Community at the specified date and typical for the property type in its locale.
- The price represents a normal consideration for the property sold unaffected by special financing amounts and/or terms, services, fees, costs, or credits incurred in the transaction. Real Estate Appraisal Terminology, Society of Real Estate Appraisers, Revised Edition, 1984; See also, Real Estate Valuation in Litigation, J. D. Eaton, M.A.I., American Institute of Real Estate Appraisers, 1982, pp. 4-5; Property Appraisal and Assessment Administration, International Association of Assessing Officers, 1990, pp. 79-80; Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice, Glossary.
Evidence Not Substantial and Persuasive to Overcome Presumption
The totality of evidence in the record was insufficient to meet the evidentiary burden of substantial and persuasive evidence to overcome the presumption of correct valuation by the Jasper County Board of Equalization.
Complainant’s appraiser did not opine a value of the subject property on January 1, 2015, the relevant date applicable to the valuation of the subject property in this appeal. However, his appraisal included a comparable sale 1, which occurred on 12/30/2014, only two day prior to the applicable date in question. Complainant’s comparable 1 sold for $1,339,860.
Respondent’s appraiser provided an appraisal while admitting that he does not have access to MLS data for Joplin, MO where the subject property is located. Without access to relevant data relating to the pertinent location of the subject property one is appraising, one then logically lacks the pertinent information to make location adjustments, if necessary.
Notwithstanding this fact, Complainant’s appraiser provided substantial and persuasive evidence regarding a location adjustment for comparing properties in Joplin, MO to those in Springfield, MO. Respondent’s appraisal also included a sale that occurred close to the applicable tax date. Respondent’s comparable sale 1 occurred on 1/8/2015. Such comparable sold for $2,772,700. By subtracting the $45,000 location adjustment provided by Complainant’s appraiser, an adjusted sales price of $2,727,700 is reached.
Finally, as noted above, both appraisers also did a cost approach to value the subject property. The following table sets forth a summary of the pertinent numbers:
|Jasper County BOE Valuation||$2,041,150|
|Complainant’s Comparable 1, Sold 12/30/2014||$1,339,860 Adjusted Sales Price|
|Respondent’s Comparable 1, Sold 1/8/2015||$2,727,700 Adjusted Sales Price|
|Complainant’s Cost Approach Valuation||$2,538,777|
|Respondent’s Cost Approach Valuation||$2,510,700|
The two sales together, support the BOE valuation. Furthermore, both appraisers’ cost approaches serve as a cross-check of the two sales together to support the BOE valuation. Therefore the BOE valuation is Affirmed.
The true market valuation for the subject property as determined by the Jasper County BOE is AFFIRMED.
The assessed value for the subject property for tax year 2016 is set at $387,810 residential.
Application for Review
A party may file with the Commission an application for review of this decision within thirty days of the mailing date set forth in the Certificate of Service for this Decision. The application shall contain specific facts or law as grounds upon which it is claimed the decision is erroneous. Said application must be in writing addressed to the State Tax Commission of Missouri, P.O. Box 146, Jefferson City, MO 65102-0146, and a copy of said application must be sent to each person at the address listed below in the certificate of service.
Failure to state specific facts or law upon which the application for review is based will result in summary denial. Section 138.432, RSMo
The Collector of Jasper County, as well as the collectors of all affected political subdivisions therein, shall continue to hold the disputed taxes pending the possible filing of an Application for Review, unless said taxes have been disbursed pursuant to a court order under the provisions of Section 139.031.8, RSMo.
Any Finding of Fact which is a Conclusion of Law or Decision shall be so deemed. Any Decision which is a Finding of Fact or Conclusion of Law shall be so deemed.
SO ORDERED June 30th 2017.
STATE TAX COMMISSION OF MISSOURI
John J. Treu
Senior Hearing Officer
Certificate of Service
I hereby certify that a copy of the foregoing has been sent electronically or mailed postage prepaid this 30th day of June, 2017, to: Complainants(s) counsel and/or Complainant, the County Assessor and/or Counsel for Respondent and County Collector.
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