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Clayton County Real Estate News

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If you are considering purchasing a home or refinancingyou can go to or along with local mortgage lenders in your areato determine what loan will best suit youand your family.  You can compare closing costs, APR's and Par rates to determine what loan will best serve yourand your family's long-term interests.

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Clayton County has seen drastic declines in their home prices over the past few years. Even so many County Appraisers have not reflected that decline properly in their valuation of residential properties in Clayton County.

According to the AJC—12/24/2011, the typical tax appraisal in Clayton county exceeded the typical sales value by an average of 29%putting it only behind Douglas County (37%) in metro Atlanta (11 Counties—Cherokee, Clayton, Cobb, Dekalb, Douglas, Fayette, Fulton, Gwinnett, Henry and Rockdale) “property valuations” that were over-valued by County Appraisers.

Clayton County commissioners recently imposed the metro areas highest tax rate in the summer of 2011, however—most homeowners in the county will see little, if any increase in their tax bill due to falling valuations.

However, appeals in the County are at a record high (8,700 appeals from homeowners seeking to lower their taxes).

The new state law (mandates that appraisers take into account bank and distressed property sales into their valuation formula—and notify homeowners of their estimated tax value on their bill) and the decline in value has made the Tax Assessors job—a difficult one in Clayton county.

On many occasions the disagreement in home values between the homeowner and the County are worked out at the tax assessor level—and don’t go any further. Many of the cases in Clayton that go before the “Board of Equalization” even in up in a compromise.

There are many “investor” homeowners in Clayton County due to the reduced values of many homes. Many investors are investing for rental income and holding on to the property for years in order to make a decent return.

Those who are purchasing and are attempting to make a quick-turn profit are investing in other areas of Atlanta where the School Districts are solid and distressed properties are available.

If you are an investor and you don’t get your valuations down and your property value continues to fall you put yourself in a bad situation—from an income perspective. In those cases it may be in your best interest to appeal your valuations.

In 2011 those who had a successful appeal saw on average a 16% reduction in their bill on top of the 8% across-the-board cut issued earlier in 2011.

As new homeowners purchase bargains in Clayton County expect the valuations by the County and challenges by homeowners to continue to be at a high level.

In Clayton you have a high number of foreclosures as well as the region’s highest unemployment rate. As of September 2011 Clayton County has registered over 1,300 foreclosures.

The average home price in Clayton County is about $80,000. Clayton County has almost 80,000 homes and nearly 40% are owned by investors or non-residential homeowners.

In many metro Atlanta Counties the Tax Assessors Office is trying to make up for the “valuation revenue shortfall” in the form of higher property taxes—as the budgets are fairly lean in most jurisdictions.

In Clayton County the commissioners approved a 5-mill tax hike that raised residents’ tax rate by 34%. However, with the valuation lower—many residents are paying about the same amount they paid in previous years.

The increased number of appeals in Clayton County is due in large part to new legislation and greater transparency that the County must provide when valuing homes.

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Thomas (TJ) Underwood has been providing financial advice as a tax practitioner since the mid 1980’s and began his financial planning career (while earning a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration/Finance/Marketing), in Detroit at Wayne State University.  From 2010 up to the present he continues to provide visitors timely personal finance and wealth building advice and articles—including real estate advice—on 3 sites that he has created since 2010. 

Even though he is an active real estate Broker in the Atlanta Metropolitan area, he continues to blog consistently to help visitors and those who desire lasting financial and life changing success the opportunity to change their life for the better in a more efficient way. 

You can learn more about him and gain access to all three sites that he has created by going to Who is the creator of page.

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