Property owners in Greensboro who have received the 2022 value of their property from Guilford County don’t need to be told that the Guilford County revaluation has sent their property values soaring.
The increased value of individual property varies, but at the City Council retreat on Wednesday, March 23, Greensboro Financial and Administrative Services Director Marlene Druga said, “It will be an overall average in the range of a 15 to 20 percent increase. A lot of people are above that and a lot of people are below that.”
She added that while all the figures were not complete, it appeared the increase would be closer to 20 percent, and that it was possible it could go higher.
The City Council has the opportunity to offset what will be a sizable increase in property tax bills for property owners in Greensboro by lowering the current Greensboro property tax rate from the current rate of 66.25 cents to the property neutral tax rate. If the increase is 15 percent, the reduction would be to 58 cents, and if the increase is 20 percent, the revenue neutral property tax rate would be 56 cents.
The revenue neutral rate is the rate that would raise about the same amount of revenue for the city as if there had been no revaluation. The revenue neutral rate allows for growth but would result in the average property owner paying about the same in Greensboro property taxes in 2022 as in 2021.
If the City Council does not lower the tax rate, then the city will see an increase in property tax revenue of between 15 percent and 20 percent, and there doesn’t appear to be any support on the City Council for lowering the tax rate to the revenue neutral rate, which would provide tax relief for all the property owners in Greensboro.
However, the City Council did discuss establishing programs for low-income property owners, particularly senior citizens who would have difficulty handling the massive tax increase.
Councilmember Justin Outling suggested Greensboro establish a program similar to one in Charlotte where low-income property owners “effectively at the end of the day would pay the same taxes.”
Such a program would offer no relief for moderate income property owners, who also might struggle with a property tax increase of 15 percent, 20 percent or more.