Fulton County homeowners complain of massive tax assessment increase

ATLANTA — Homeowners across Fulton County have been receiving tax assessments in the mail in recent days and some are getting an unwelcome surprise -- a big increase.

That means their taxes are going up too.

Some people have been calling Channel 2 Action News about assessments that are much higher than anything you could sell your home for -- some nearly doubling in just one year.

“I just couldn’t believe it when I saw it,” homeowner Richard Naszcyniec said.

He told Channel 2 investigative reporter Justin Gray that when he opened the tax assessment for his Milton home, it went from $625,000 in 2020 to $1.2 million for 2021.

“I can understand things have gone up, but in my case, I’m looking at an 80% increase in valuation in one year. That’s just crazy,” Naszcyniec said.

Property values across metro Atlanta have gone up this year, particularly in hot Atlanta communities and popular areas like Naszcyniec’s north Fulton County neighborhood.

“First you’re hurt ‚then you say maybe your house is really worth that much. Then you look around and you’re like there’s no way you can possibly sell that,” Naszcyniec said. “You think it’s worth that and you are willing to pony it up, you can have it.”

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Homeowners can appeal those tax assessments, but you have to file the appeal within 45 days of receiving your notice.

In past years, around 70% of the people who did appeal got some sort of adjustment.

“The benefit of the doubt has to go to the taxpayer,” said Larry Schultz, who is a former Fulton tax assessor employee.

He is now working with homeowners trying to appeal assessments.

“Even though there are a lot increase in property values it doesn’t necessarily mean they are all correct and the reason why it goes back to opinion and uniformity,” Schultz said.

Naszcyniec is surprisingly not appealing his assessment.

“80% increase that’s pretty close to double what you were paying and that’s real money,” Naszcyniec said.

A Fulton County spokesperson tells us they are not aware of any major issues. All Fulton property owners can appeal their assessment. You can do it online or in person.

First, you’ll want to check that they have data like your square footage correct -- a mistake there could be the issue.

You’ll also need to provide evidence like comps in the area, photos or recent appraisals.

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