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Assessing

Welcome to the Gaastra’s Assessor’s page!

Assessor: Tammy Hendrickson, MCAO
Email: thendrickson.assessor@gmail.com
Phone: 906-284-1555
Mailing Address: 413 N 6th Street, Crystal Falls, MI 49920

If you would like to schedule a meeting, please feel free to call or email.

Log cabin in woods during winter

Assessor Duties

The assessor compiles the annual assessment role on which taxes will be levied, maintains property tax descriptions and maps, processes personal property statements, and conducts field audits of both existing properties and new construction located within the City of Gaastra. The assessor provides the city treasurer with taxable value on all city properties, used to produce annual tax bills.

  • Establish legal assessment roll and annually site visit 20% residential properties
  • Review and evaluate commercial and industrial property
  • Site visit and review new construction
  • Continue public education in areas such as non-consideration forms, homestead applications, property transfers, and personal property tax law
  • Enhance and increase understanding of and compliance with the property tax system as established by Township ordinances and State law.

Transfer of Ownership

Property owners are required to file a Property Transfer Affidavit with the City of Gaastra Assessor when a property transfers ownership. Closing agents (attorneys, real estate offices, title companies, etc.) should provide these forms to you at closing. The forms must be filed within 45 days of closing to avoid penalty. Forms and guidelines are also available at the Michigan Department of Treasury website. http://www.michigan.gov/treasury.

Land Division

A Land Division Application must be submitted to the City of Gaastra Assessor when a landowner intends to subdivide or sell only a portion of a property, or in any case where a property’s legal description does not match city tax records. Approval for the land division must be obtained before the property is sold. For more information including fees and application forms, please contact the Assessor at 906-284-1555.

Commonly Used Forms

Board of Review

The Board of Review (BOR) is a panel of property owners in your jurisdiction. Their duty as members of the BOR is to hear property assessment appeals, property classification appeals, applications for hardship exemptions, and to correct any clerical errors or mutual mistakes of fact that occur after assessments are finalized each year. The Board of Review hears general taxpayer appeals at its March meeting. Meeting dates and times will be listed on your assessment change notice. Residents may appear in person or may protest to the Board in writing. You must be able to support your assertions with data showing why you believe your assessment to be incorrect. Decisions will be rendered promptly.

Members: Harriet Florani – Secretary, Linda Lindberg, and Chris Sayre

March BOR

If a property owner disagrees with an assessment, he or she may file an appeal to the March Board of Review. Valuation appeals are heard in March only. Assessment notices are sent out to property owners in late February.

  • March 11, 2024
  • March 13, 2024

July & December BOR

In July and December the board convenes to correct clerical errors or mutual mistake of fact or the taxpayer has requested a Poverty Exemption, which has been denied by the assessor or the taxpayer has previously been denied by the assessor or the assessor has determined that a taxable value uncapping should be reversed as provided by MCL 211.27a(4).

  • July 16, 2024 noon
  • December 10, 2024 noon

Assessment Appeals

If you believe the market would not support the Assessor’s estimate for your property, or that your assessment is not equitable with others, please bring this to the Assessor’s attention. Our Assessor will be glad to answer your questions and explain how to appeal the assessment to the Board of Review.

For detailed information about the Michigan Tax Tribunal and the appeals process, please visit their website. http://www.michigan.gov/tax_trib

Taxpayers who disagree with the Board of Review’s determination regarding property classification may appeal to the State Tax Commission by June 30 of the year under appeal. More information is available on their website. http://www.michigan.gov/treasury

March Board of Review Appeal Form (L-4035)

Land Values and ECFs

Click to download Land Study and ECFs Excel file.

Contact the Assessor with any questions.

Assessor Frequently Asked Questions

What are property taxes based on?

On March 15, 1994, Michigan voters approved the constitutional amendment known as Proposal “A”. Prior to Proposal “A” property tax calculations were based on State Equalized Value. Proposal “A” established “Taxable Value” as the basis for the calculation of property taxes. Increases in Taxable Value are limited to the percent of change in the rate of inflation or 5%, whichever is less, as long as there were no losses or additions to the property. The limit on Taxable Value does not apply to a property in the year following a transfer of ownership (sale).

How are property taxes calculated?

Property Tax Equation
Property Taxes = taxable Value / 1000 x your local millage rate

What are the requirements for Disabled Veterans Exemption Eligibility?

Disabled Veterans Exemption Eligibility Requirements:
In order to be eligible for the exemption, the disabled veteran must have been honorably discharged from the armed forces of the United States. They must be a Michigan resident. Additionally, they must meet one of the following criteria:

  • Has been determined by the United States department of veterans’ affairs to be permanently and totally disabled as a result of military service and entitled to veterans’ benefits at the 100% rate.
  • Has a certificate from the United States veterans’ administration, or its successors, certifying that he or she is receiving or has received pecuniary assistance due to disability for specially adapted housing.
  • Has been rated by the United States department of veterans’ affairs as individually unemployable. The unremarried surviving spouse of the disable veteran is eligible for the exemption based upon the eligibility of their spouse; therefore, the spouse must also be a Michigan resident. The exemption will continue only as long as the surviving spouse remains unremarried. How is a determination made that the disabled veteran is permanently and totally disabled as a result of military service and entitled to veterans’ benefits at the 100% rate? The Veterans’ Administration defines a service-connected disability as a disability related to an injury or disease that developed during or was aggravated while on active duty or active duty for training.[1] The Veterans Administration Schedule for Rating Disabilities is used to assess the medical conditions and illnesses incurred or aggravated during the veteran’s military service and a percentage rating from 0% to 100% is assigned based on the severity of the disability. Individuals filing the affidavit for the exemption under criteria a) must provide a copy of the letter from the Veterans’ Administration indicating they have a 100% service connected disability and are entitled to receive benefits.
    • Note: The Act does not require the disabled veteran to have already received the benefit, it only requires that they have been determined to be permanently and totally disabled as a result of military service and entitled to veterans’ benefits at the 100% rate.
  • What is assistance for specially adapted housing?
    • The Veterans’ Administration provides veterans with certain permanent and total service-connected disabilities financial assistance to purchase or construct an adapted home or modify an existing home to accommodate a disability. There are two grant programs: specially adapted housing grant (SAH) and the special housing adaptation grant (SHA).[2] The State Tax Commission has determined that receipt of either grant would qualify an individual for the exemption under criteria b).
    • Individuals filing the affidavit for the exemption under criteria b) must provide a copy of the certificate from the Veterans’ Administration indicating they are receiving or have received pecuniary assistance due to disability for specially adapted housing.
  • What does individually unemployable mean?
    • Individual unemployability is part of the Veterans’ Administration disability compensation program. Under this program, veterans may receive compensation at the 100% rate even though their service-connected disability is not rated at 100%.[3]
    • In order to be eligible a veteran must prove they are unable to maintain substantially gainful employment as a result of their service-connected disability. In addition, they must have one service-connected disability rated at 60% or more or two or more service-connected disabilities with at least one rated at 40% or more with a combined rating of 70% or more.[4] Individuals filing the affidavit for the exemption under criteria c) must provide a copy of the letter from the Veterans’ Administration indicating they are individually unemployable. Is there an asset test and/or means test to determine eligibility? No, there is no asset test and/or means test to determine eligibility. In order to be eligible, the disabled veteran must meet the requirements of Public Act 161 of 2013 regardless of their income or the value of their home.
What is a Principal Residence Exemption (PRE)?

If you own and occupy your home as your principal residence, you can fill out a PRE (form 2368) to receive an exemption from the tax levied by a local school district for operating purposes, up to 18 mills. You must submit form 2368 to the Assessor by June 1st of current year for summer taxes and November 1st for Winter taxes.

What if I no longer live at that residence but still own the property, Do I get the PRE?

When a person no longer owns or occupies the property as a principal residence, he or she must file a Request to Rescind Homeowner’s Principal Residence Exemption, form 2602, with the township assessor to remove the PRE. The PRE will be removed from the local property tax roll by the assessor beginning with the next tax year. Failure to rescind a PRE may result in additional taxes, interest and penalties. Under certain circumstances a person may qualify for a conditional rescission which allows an owner to receive a PRE on his or her current Michigan property and on previously exempted property simultaneously for up to three years. To initially qualify for a conditional rescission, the owner must submit an Owner’s Conditional Rescission of Principal Residence Exemption (PRE), Form 4640 to the township assessor on or before June 1 or November 1 of the first year of the claim.

What is notice of assessment?

Notices of assessment change are mailed at the end of February. This notice indicates the assessed value and taxable value for the year in which it is set. It shows the percentage of Principle Residence Exemption that is on the property, the Classification of the property and if there was or was not a Transfer of Ownership.

What if I don’t agree with my assessment?

When dealing with a current assessment year (following calendar year after April) please reach out to the township assessor. The assessor will be happy to review your property with you and make on-site visits. When dealing with a roll that has been finalized by the assessing department (after you receive your change notice in February) your first step is to appeal to the March Board of Review. The assessor will provide you the necessary forms, but it is up to you to present your case, even if you appeal in writing, so please support your claim of an improper assessment, such as a recent appraisal and comparative property sales.

The Board of Review will notify you in writing with their decision. If you find their decision unsatisfactory, you may further appeal to the Michigan Tax Tribunal. Contact information for the MTT will be provided along with the Board of Review decision. IMPORTANT: For residential and agricultural properties, you may NOT appeal to the MTT on a valuation dispute unless you appeal to the March Board of Review first. the last meeting of the March Board of Review. The meeting dates and times of the local Board of Review are also included in the notice.

What happens when you purchase a home?

When a property, or interest in a property, is transferred, the following year’s State Equalized Value (SEV) becomes that year’s Taxable Value (TV). In other words, if you purchase property, your Taxable Value for the following year will be the same as the SEV. The Taxable Value will then be “capped” for the second year following the transfer of ownership.

I just bought my house last year and the taxable value doubled, Why?

Because of Proposal A which took effect in 1994, when a property transfers to a new owner the Taxable Value increases to the Assessed Value in the year following the sale and then is capped at the rate of inflation as long as you own the property.

The taxes levied next year may be vastly different than the taxes you will pay this year. We encourage you to estimate your taxes. A property tax estimator can be accessed via the following link: https://www.michigan.gov/taxes/property/estimator

What is an Annual Inspection of property?

Due to the recent State Tax Commission policy, it is expected that local units of government will annually field visit a minimum of 20% of each parcel in each property class each year. The expectation is that all parcels will be examined at lease once over a five-year period.