by Frank M. Handibode, Hebron NH

Hey, New Hampshire property owners, get a load of this. The Board of Taxation and Land Appeals (the BTLA) has ruled that if you appeal your assessments to them, it is perfectly okay for a town or assessor to use comparables against you that are two years and six months past the Assessment Date. You try getting away with that one.

But wait, it gets even more absurd. If you have a view assessment of say, $275,000, as in my case, the town is allowed to take an adjustment of $270,000 to increase the market value of their comparable for its “LACK OF A VIEW.”

Can you believe this? The comparable property sold for $475,000, so, the $270,000 adjustment represented 57% of the sales price. That adjustment plus others increased the market value of the town’s comp to $756,920. Wow! And remember, the New Hampshire DRA and the ASB have never issued a clear and concise definition of what constitutes “a view.” What chance does an appellant have when this sort of unfair tactics is permitted?

Let’s face it. This perversion of the property assessment appeals process will never change until the public is properly represented on the BTLA with its own share of Public Members, as is the case on the NH Assessing Standards Board.