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Assessor Announces COVID-19 Adjustments

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Yesterday, the Cook County Assessor published a report detailing what he is calling “COVID-19 Adjustments” that he intends to make to property assessments in the South and West suburbs. These adjustments will have an impact on every tax bill issued in Cook County. For now, the immediate impact is to lower tax assessments throughout the South and West suburbs.

The Assessor intends to reduce residential property assessments by a factor tied to unemployment figures in the neighborhood where the property is located. Those reductions are expected to fall between 8.0% and 12.2% for single-family homes and 10.0% and 15.2% for multi-family apartment buildings with less than 6 units. The reductions will be higher in neighborhoods with higher unemployment figures, but are expected to remain within those ranges.

On the commercial side, the Assessor announced changes to the capitalization rates his office uses to determine assessments for such properties. These changes are tailored specifically to those property types the Assessor has determined to be hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic. Property types that will receive the greatest relief include shopping centers, restaurants, and hotels.

The changes outlined by the Assessor only apply to the South and West suburbs for now. Later announcements promise to bring similar changes to the other areas that comprise Cook County. Also up in the air is whether the Assessor’s proposed changes will survive legal scrutiny. No matter what the Assessor later decides, property tax assessments are currently in a state of nearly constant flux due to the COVID-19 pandemic. If you have any questions about your assessment or any questions about property tax issues in general, please contact us at info@craneandnorcross.com or 312-726-9161.