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Marshall Fire survivors face massive property value spikes as rebuilding continues

Marshall Fire victim rebuilding his Louisville home himself
Posted at 3:44 PM, May 25, 2023

LOUISVILLE, Colo. — Like many Coloradans, Marshall Fire survivors have been receiving their property value assessments from the county to find huge increases.

As with most communities in Colorado, Louisville and Superior have seen historic increases across the board — 42% and 40% median increases, respectively. However, properties impacted by the Marshall Fire are seeing an even greater jump over last year, due to some reductions elapsing.

The Boulder County Assessor’s Office held a virtual town hall Wednesday evening for Marshall Fire survivors to address questions and concerns as the deadline for valuation appeals approaches.

“Folks are being hit from all sides by costs, whether it’s the cost to rebuild, the ability to rebuild, and then, you know, property taxes are just another,” said Ben Edelstein, co-chair of the Marshall Fire ROC Board of Directors. “Everybody that owns property has to pay taxes on that property. But when folks have lost everything, it’s hard to understand that they still have a tax bill that will be due.”

Dozens of impacted homeowners joined the virtual town hall to question their property valuations, and ask about the best ways to appeal. Several of the questions came from owners whose homes had completely burned down, but saw their land skyrocket in value.

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Local News

How to appeal property assessments in Denver metro and Colorado

Jeff Anastasio
12:31 PM, May 18, 2023

In 2022, a 50% reduction in land value was given for homes that were destroyed in the Marshall Fire. For homes that were damaged, adjustments between 3% and 13% were given to mitigate costs incurred. However, those reductions are not being automatically placed on valuations this year, with the assumption that remediation of damages has occurred in the intervening months.

“I live in Louisville. The homes around me had smoke damage, and so I saw a lot of insulation trucks, attics being cleaned out, a lot of cleaning going on,” Boulder County Assessor Cynthia Braddock explained. “We made an assumption that properties had been remediated. That may not be correct for your property, so please appeal your property and let us know what you’re still facing. We've been made aware recently of several homes where they're still not livable, and my staff don't have access into homes.”

Representatives from the Boulder County Assessor’s Office will be at the Louisville Recreation and Senior Center Thursday and again on June 1 from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. to answer specific questions and concerns from impacted homeowners.

Appeals over appraised property values must be submitted by June 8, 2023.