Zika Fears Factored Into Miami Home Assessments?

August 10, 2016

Fears over the Zika virus may now even be spreading to home values in some areas. In fact, this mosquito-borne virus has one group that focuses on property tax appeals in Miami warning that Zika should be factored into property assessments there.

A new report from the Property Tax Appeal Group, which provides expert and professional real estate ad valorem appeals on tax assessments in South Florida, warns that if Zika virus fears continue over the long term, it could cause businesses to close, which could then depress real estate values nearby. The report urges the Miami-Dade County Property Tax Appraiser to take this into account when doing its property assessments in affected and surrounding areas.

Miami’s trendy Wynwood neighborhood, for example, has seen a huge boom in property values in recent years. Lately, however, the neighborhood has become the epicenter of the Zika virus outbreak in the U.S. Some businesses are even temporarily shutting down.

Zika threats may be overlooked when arriving at assessed values but should be taken into account, says Barry Sharpe, the leader of the Property Tax Appeal Group. He also says that home owners may even want to consider appealing their property assessments if appraisers don’t take the virus into consideration when determining home values.

"As this is all new to this area, it is too early to predict the full impact this condition will create," Sharpe says.

Source: “Zika Virus May Affect Property Values in Parts of Miami,” World Property Journal (Aug. 5, 2016) and  “Zika Virus Fear Could Depress Values in Miami,” HousingWire (Aug. 5, 2016)