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A professional property valuer inspecting a house to determine an accurate market value assessment.

When to Get a Professional Property Valuation

Property valuations done by government authorities for tax purposes often utilise mass appraisal techniques. In certain cases, hiring a professional valuer to conduct an individual property assessment may be advantageous over relying on the statutory valuation.

Understanding Statutory Valuations

Statutory valuations refer to the mass valuations undertaken across entire cities, municipalities or states by government valuers like the Valuer-General.

  • They use automated valuation models, limited sample inspections and zoning analysis to estimate standardised land values for council rates and land tax calculations.
  • As they are not based on detailed inspection of each property, statutory valuations may overlook unique traits.
  • Error margins are allowed to account for the mass appraisal methodology.

When to Consider a Professional Valuation

Though statutory valuations aim for fairness by benchmarking to the area, a professional valuation by accredited valuers may be warranted in these situations:

  • You recently purchased the property substantially below or above the current statutory value.
  • There are issues like easements, soil contamination, restrictive covenants etc. negatively affecting value which require expert assessment.
  • It is a large acreage, rural, commercial or complex property difficult to value through mass appraisal.
  • You have undertaken major renovations/improvements not accounted for in the standard valuation.
  • The property has deficiencies like structural damage or access limitations not factored by external inspections.
  • Your appeal of the statutory valuation was rejected, but you believe further assessment is needed.

The Professional Valuation Process

  • A certified valuer will inspect the property in detail internally and externally to assess its attributes.
  • They analyse recent comparable sales more relevant to the property to derive a market value.
  • Valuation reports outline the methodology and provide reasoned analysis for the assessed value.
  • If required, professional valuers can also represent you in valuation objection or legal appeals.

When to Use Which Valuation?

For formal property tax assessments, the officially assigned statutory value will apply even if a higher/lower professional valuation exists.

However, a detailed expert report can provide supporting evidence if objecting against an inaccurate statutory valuation. Many objection authorities may give more weight to an independent professional’s valuation versus your own estimate.

So while statutory valuations suffice in most standard cases, availing professional valuations can prove beneficial where the formal valuation appears incorrect or unfairly determined.