I have received a number of calls relating to excessive rates increases on properties flowing from the recent valuation process. Please note the following information compiled by Cllr Angelo Dashwood, our Spokesperson for Budget & Treasury.
As at 1 July 2013, the new Property Rates became effective. Many residents are complaining about having to pay more than the 9.14% advertised. This problem seems to be even worse when it comes to commercial property.
Unfortunately, if you are faced with an increase which is excessive there is no “quick-fix” that I can offer you.
The following 4 paragraphs outline the procedure used by the municipality and the process followed:
A residential property’s value is based on market value. This is the price that a willing buyer would pay a willing seller for the property on the open market. The valuation of a non-residential property is however slightly different; it is not only calculated on the “willing seller, willing buyer” principle, but also takes into account the location of the property, its condition, and factors such as rental occupancy levels and rental costs, and of course, building costs. Over time some areas become more desirable whilst other others become less so and as a result this will have an impact on the valuation of properties in these areas.
The total amount of rates collected each year is a budget balancing figure that comprises only some 16% of the total municipal budget which generally increases by around the annual inflation rate each year. It is the increase in the budget shortfall each year that determines the increase in property rates. The amount that each property owner pays is determined by the value of his/her property in relation to the other properties in the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipal Area.
The valuation date for the 2013 General Valuation is 1 July 2012 and all properties are currently valued based on market conditions at that date. The 2013 General Valuation Roll was open for inspection at the municipal offices and on the municipal website from 18 February to 19 April 2013. In addition thereto all property owners were sent a Section 49 notice advising them of the value assigned to their property as well as their right to object, within the period stipulated by the Municipal Property Rates Act, should they not be in agreement with the valuation. The process to review the valuations of properties for which objections were received is currently underway and it is anticipated that this process will be complete by the end of August 2013. Each property owner who objected to the value assigned to their property will receive an objection outcome letter advising of the Municipal Valuer’s decision as well as their right to appeal should they still not be in agreement with the valuation.
If you as a property owner are not in agreement with the valuation assigned to your property but failed to submit an objection within the stipulated period, you may complete a “Valuation Query Form”. These forms are available on the municipal website, www.nelsonmandelabay.gov.za or at any Customer Care Centre. Such queries will be addressed once the objection process is complete. Further information can be obtained on telephone number 041-506 5555 or by visiting any Customer Care Centre.
If you cannot or are unable to pay the increased amount, make application at a Customer Care Centre to continue paying the pre 1st July 2013 figure until your query has been attended to. Lastly, if you do not agree with the valuation given by the Municipality on your property, solicit the help of your suitably qualified estate agent and obtain a written valuation from him which you should submit with your application.
I hope this helps – please note that my office is available to assist should need any additional information. Please call Anne or Natasha on 041 585 0515 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
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