How is an Equalization Study conducted?

Although the local Assessor must assess each parcel in a local unit annually, Equalization is concerned with a smaller subset of properties within each classification, called a sample.  Sample parcels are chosen to be representative of properties within that classification.  Samples may constitute one of two types of studies:  1) sales studies, for those classifications in which a sufficient number of properties have sold to enable a market-based analysis without an appraisal, or 2) appraisal studies, for those classifications lacking a sufficient number of sales.  Equalization performs over 500 such studies yearly.

For each classification, the local Assessor’s assessed values are listed alongside Equalization’s True Cash Values, whether they be sales prices or appraised values.  Both columns are totaled, and the total assessed values are divided by the total sales price/appraised value.  (For a sales study, further adjustments are made to account for different time periods.)  The aggregate ratio that results from this division is sent to the local Assessor by December 1 for review, and the completed studies, used to project the True Cash Value for the starting bases of the next cycle, are submitted to the state by January 2.  A list of the assessed-to-market ratios (called Tentative Ratios) is published in February for each local unit, by class.

Note:  Sales used in a sales study must first be verified to ensure that they are arms-length transactions that would accurately reflect the market.

Show All Answers

1. Why did someone from the Equalization Department visit my property?
2. Is Equalization the same as my Assessor?
3. Will Equalization raise my taxes?
4. What is an Equalization Study?
5. Why was my property chosen for the current Equalization Study?
6. Can I refuse to participate in an Equalization Study?
7. How is an Equalization Study conducted?
8. What is County Equalization and the Equalization Report?
9. Where do I submit my Property Transfer Affidavit, PA 260 affidavit, or homestead exemption affidavit?
10. Aside from Equalization, how does assessing work in the State of Michigan generally?
11. What is the Apportionment Report?
12. Why is the Property Description Division attached to the Equalization Department?
13. How do I split or combine my property?