The value assigned to your property, by law, is the value the appraisal district estimates your property would sell for on January 1st of that year. This is crucial to understanding why a condition issue has to have existed on January 1st in order to use it as evidence for a lower value.
What if i had a condition issue, but fixed it prior to January 1st?
In this case, the condition issue DID NOT exist on January 1st, therefore CANNOT be used as evidence to lower the value. If an issue was fixed prior to January 1st, it is no longer a factor in the value of your property on January 1st. You could, however, make the argument that getting rid of mold (as an example) would negatively impact the value of the home because it would have to be listed on a seller disclosure document.
What if I discovered the issue after January 1st and try to use it as evidence to lower the value?
This is a little bit of a grey area.
- If it is an issue that would have been discovered in an inspection of property on January 1st (i.e. wood rot under the house), then you should go ahead and include it. A buyer of a property on January 1st would typically have an inspection done on the property that would have discovered this issue, negatively impacting the value of the property.
- If it is an issue that occurred after January 1st (i.e. a hail storm in February), unfortunately, you cannot include this as evidence to lower your value. A buyer of your property on January 1st would not have accounted for an unknowable future hail storm to price your property.