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Property Values Decline in Plainfield, Will County

But lower assessments do not necessarily translate into lower tax bills.

For the third consecutive year, Will County homeowners will see a reduction in the assessed value of their houses.

Will County Supervisor of Assessments Rhonda Novak announced Wednesday that assessments are down an average of 6.44 countywide due to the continued effects of the housing slump.

In Plainfield Township, Assessor Erin Kljaich said assessments are down an average of 6 percent.

“It’s really important to note that it’s not 6 percent across the board,” Kljaich added, saying some pockets of Plainfield Township will see even greater reductions.

The decline can be attributed to the collapse of the housing market that started in 2008, resulting in a large number of foreclosures, a deflated demand for new housing, a drop in the amount for which houses were being sold and increased difficulty in getting mortgage financing.

Property assessments are determined by the amount houses sold for in the previous three years. In 2012, those years would have been 2009, 2010 and 2011, Novak said.

According to Kljaich, 2008 was the last year home prices were on the rise. With the slump in full swing by 2009, prices began to level off, dropping by 6 to 7 percent in both 2010 and 2011.

But a drop in your home’s value doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll see a drop in your property taxes.

“That’s a huge question a lot of people are asking,” said Kljaich, who even has a section of her website dedicated to explaining the topic.

“The tax rate is set by the county, and it’s based on the levies requested by governing bodies,” she said.

Despite budget cuts, some taxing bodies have had to increase their levies, thereby increasing the tax rate, in order to maintain funding for operations and services, Kljaich said.

That means that your tax bill could stay the same or go up, even as your property value goes down.

For example, District 202 raised its tax rate from 4.86 cents per $100 of assessed valuation in 2010 to 5.27 cents per $100 assessed valuation in 2011. This would be applied to tax bills paid in 2012.

“If [taxing bodies] continue to ask for more money than the previous year, your tax rate increase is going to be greater than your decrease in assessment,” Kljaich said.

Someone's tax bill is also determined by the taxing districts in which their house is located. For example, while Joliet's fire and library expenses are included in the taxes that are paid to city, has independent and districts -- each of which sets their own tax rate. It's possible those two taxing bodies could set rates higher than what might have been paid were they included under a municipal government umbrella.

It's also possible there are taxing bodies whose district encompasses one part of town but not another. Two evenly matched houses next door to each other -- one in the district, and the other not -- could pay different amounts in taxes as a result.

Property owners should receive by mail a statement notifying them of their house's new assessed value next week. If someone wants to appeal their assessment with the county's board of review, they have until Sept. 10 to do so.

For more information, go to www.willcountysoa.com. Plainfield Township residents can call 815-436-5110.

concernedresident August 05, 2012 at 02:26 PM
JeffK thanks for the pleasant not this morning, not surprised really, but really? All of us residents continue to take it up where the sun doesn't shine. I don't know if I agree with your teacher comment because I believe that I had read a comment and then followed the sequent link about a pension contribution that they are still receiving and as to paying more for insurance, really? i've been working in the public sector 30+ years and my insurance goes up every year and I get less coverage so that doesn't fly. And a pay freeze? Boo Hoo, I've take pay cuts so that I can keep my current job along with many other people I know. It just seems to me that I hear constantly about teachers going on strike complaining and I also hear every year that we are short money in their budget. Simple solution, just as in every other business out there, make cuts. If not in number of employees, then in the amount you are paying or the contributions you make to their benefits. How many residents in Plainfield or anywhere for that fact even have a pension? How many have taken pay cuts? I just got done sending a child to U of I and for them to increase their tuition over the past 4 years almost 20% SHAME ON THEM!. How can anyone afford to send kids to college? And let's not even start about the scholarship programs for the average white middle class. This government, this society of pleasing our foreign neighbors is screwing the average middle class working stiff.
silentrippy August 05, 2012 at 10:55 PM
Nick Beam - Here's another one for you... At the village of Plainfield's reqest, the District 202 school board agreed to reduce the value per acre from $139,000 to $75,000. The concessions are a “one-time exception,” Supt. John Harper said. “This does not set a precedent for us moving forward.” It does set a precedent Mr. Harper. What you are doing for one you will have to do for all. Why don't the homeowners get the same deal as Diageo and Springs at 127th? http://plainfield.patch.com/articles/full-speed-ahead-for-new-apartment-complex
JeffK August 06, 2012 at 01:29 AM
Concerned, I understand your anger. I'm angry too. I just think teachers are being made the scape goat. The district knows what they have to pay out yet they continue to spend more than they have. There are district's that don't have these problems. Frankfort, Oak lawn, St Charles, New Lenox to name a few. Why are they able to do it without any problems. They have a surplus. Teachers actually get better benefits and pay at some of those districts. Teachers who make (30k-60k) get a pay freeze, admin who make (100k-350k) get a 2.5% raise and we are still going after the teachers? The toll both operator and your garbage man from Waste Managment make as much or more than a number of teachers. I think people under estimate how difficult it is to be a teacher these days. Do you have any 10 year old kids tear your room apart and you have to sit there and watch? Ever have a kid tell you I know you can't touch me or my parents will sue? It's gotten out of control and these jobs aren't what they were when you were a kid. If you really believe they have it so easy why not give it a try? I think you would have a different perspective the problem in Plainfield is the corrupt board. If you want your taxes to go down they all have to be kicked out
Firemanfred1921 August 06, 2012 at 01:52 AM
The firefighters are also being made out to be the bad guys too. The fire district claims they have no money for our union contract. It's funny how they just spent over 10 grand on a Dixie Chopper lawn mower for one fire station. And almost 25 grand on a used telehandler. Maybe the next open house at the fire district they'll offer rides to the kids on these two pieces of equipment that have nothing to do with fighting fires or saving lives.
actually August 06, 2012 at 02:22 AM
That specific fire truck purchased is a specialty vehicle. It combined a fire engine and a rescue squad into one vehicle eliminating the need for two. The Pierce PUC was the best option offering the most space on the vehicle for typical firefighting equipment on a normal fire engine and all the equipment need for a rescue company....auto extrication equipment, jaws of life, rescue tools, etc. Alexis vehicles come no where close to being able to offer the space needed to combine an engine and a rescue vehicle. A Ferrara is closer but still offers considerably less space. The Bolingbrook FD in 2008 purchased Ferrara Engine's but recently switched and purchased a Pierce PUC in 2012 along with Darien-Woodridge and Pleasantview (Countryside/Burr Ridge) who recently purchased Pierce vehicles. Bristol Kendall in near by Yorkville uses Pierce vehicles as does Lockport, Troy in Shorewood, Minooka, NW Homer, Homer Township, Morris, Channohan, Romeoville, Lisle-Woodridge, and Oswego recently purchased a new Pierce ladder. Along with numerous other Fire Departments in the Chicagoland area. Firemanfred...Do you care to comment? How do you feel about this vehicle and the money they spent? Is it justified? Have you ever used this vehicle?

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