What is County Equalization and the Equalization Report?

From December through March, the local Assessors will have revisited their levels of assessment while comparing their own studies with the Equalization studies, and they will have finalized their assessment rolls for each individual parcel following the appeals heard by the March Boards of Review.  In April of each year, Michigan counties must equalize.  By law, the County Board of Commissioners must add to or subtract from the totals of any classification of property that does not reflect 50% of True Cash Value.  Although rare, if a classification requires a change, the county will apply a factor to raise or reduce every property’s assessment in order to reach 50%; otherwise each classification will receive a factor of 1.0000.  The revised assessments that result from this process are called County Equalized Values (CEV), and they are reflected in the Equalization Report.  Once the state performs a similar process of equalization in May, the final result is the State Equalized Value (SEV).

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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?