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Average home value in Pierce County drops 3% over 2022

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(The Center Square) – Residential values across Pierce County are beginning to flatten from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic with an average 3% drop in home values.

Pierce County Assessor-Treasurer Mike Lonergan’s office found that the average single-family home dropped from $572,100 in 2022 to $554,500 in 2023.

“Home values in all parts of our county have leveled off from the high-water mark of last year, and in most cases decreased slightly,” Lonergan said in a news release.

However, Lonergan is cautioning homeowners not to conclude that a decrease in value will result in more than a minor tax decrease next year. This is due to a Washington state law that allows any taxing district to increase its property tax revenue by 1% annually without approval in a ballot measure.

“Your property tax in 2024 will be the new 2023 value multiplied by the combined tax rates of your school district, city, fire district and other local districts, plus the statewide school levy that everyone pays,” Lonergan added. “So a lot depends on public votes such as levy lid lifts and bond issues.”

While the county’s average residential property value dropped 3%, the change in home value varies in cities across the region. For instance, Milton had the largest value increase at 3% to an average of $496,100 in assessed value.

“The largest drops in value are around 5% in Tacoma, Ruston, Spanaway, Eatonville and Roy,” said Lonergan.

Ruston had the largest drop in home value at 6.2%, or roughly $42,500, according to data from the Pierce County Assessor-Treasurer’s Office. The average home value in Ruston is $648,105 in 2023.

Homes in the Gig Harbor Peninsula are the highest valued in Pierce County at $876,314, which increased at 0.8% from 2022.

In comparison to neighboring King County, Pierce County homes are $280,500 less than King County’s average home value. According to Redfin, the average King County home value is $835,000, as of May 2023. That is a 5.6% drop from May 2022.

Pierce County appraisers went to nearly every house in Tacoma to estimate home values, while values in other areas were based on sales of similar homes.

As for commercial properties in Pierce County, the majority showed “moderate value increases over last year.” Retail and office spaces increased about 5%, whereas motels and warehouses increased 10%, according to the Pierce County Assessor-Treasurer.

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