Ryan Gibbs and The Gibbs Firm, LPA wish to highlight “Property Rights Brought to Light: Principles and Misconceptions” by Gary E. Heiland, MAI, AI-GRS, published in the Summer 2019 issue of The Appraisal Journal. The concept of property rights and how it applies to ad valorem taxation is a subject of constant debate. Taxing authorities, and others opposing taxpayers in assessment appeals, regularly misconstrue and misapply appraisal definitions related to property rights. Mr. Heiland’s article discusses the differences between “real estate” and “real property,” two terms that are often conflated and misunderstood. Mr. Heiland also explains the difference between the “fee simple” and “leased fee” estates, and how property rights transferred at the time of sale affect valuation.
Taxpayers seeking fair and equitable assessments will be confronted by assessors, boards of education, and other taxing authorities seeking to twist the language of well-established appraisal definitions to establish excessive assessment values. Now more than ever, taxpayers need competent and knowledgeable counsel against these theories and tactics. The Gibbs Firm strives to stay on the forefront of the issues affecting ad valorem assessment and continues to work with knowledgeable appraisers such as Mr. Heiland.