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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS:
GENERAL VALUATIONS ROLL 2013

What is a General Valuation Roll?

A General Valuation Roll (GV) is a legal document that consists of property information of all rateable properties within the boundaries of a municipality. It is produced according to The Municipal Property Rates Act 6 of 2004 (MPRA).

What is the purpose of a General Valuation Roll?

The General Valuation Roll assigns a value to all properties in a municipality with the objective of generating rates on an equitable basis.

Why a new Valuation Roll?

The last COJ valuation roll was implemented with effect from 1 July 2008, and by law the City of Johannesburg needs to review its GV every four years. In the case of the city of Johannesburg, the MEC for local Government granted the City a 12 month extension and therefore Joburg residents will see the GV implemented on 1 July 2013.

The general valuation is tied to a specific date for the entire period of the valuation roll, and must be at most one year from the date of implementation. This is referred to as Date of Valuation, at which all property values are “pegged” or “fixed” and will be 2 July 2012. The values must reflect the market value of the properties in accordance with the market conditions which applied at that date.

When can I inspect the GV13?

The 2013 valuation roll must be handed to the Municipal Manager by 31 January 2013. The Municipality will thereafter publish the Valuation Roll and open it for inspection at the municipal offices and on its website by 20 February to the 3 May 2013. All property owners will also be notified of their new values in writing.

The roll will be made available for public inspection for a period of 73 days when property owners can exercise their rights, in terms of section 50 of the MPRA and object to their values or any other property value that is deemed to be incorrect.

Objections can only be lodged against a specific individual property and not against the valuation roll.

What is the date of valuation and why is this important?

The date of valuation refers to the date at which property values are determined and fixed for the purpose of the General Valuation Roll. For the purpose of the new GV 2013 2nd July 2012 has been set as the valuation date. It is also the date that will be used for all future calculations for the purposes of supplementary valuations up until a new general valuation roll replaces the General Valuation Roll 2013.

What is the meaning of effective date of valuation?

The effective date of valuation refers to the implementation of the General Valuation Roll. This is usually coincides with the date of the new financial year of the municipality. It means that a person may be levied rates according to the new general valuation roll from the effective date. The effective date of the General Valuation Roll 2013 is 1 July 2013.

How does the City Value your property?

The purpose of the valuation project is to determine a market value of all properties, which implies the most probable price that a property would realise on the date of valuation, if sold on the open market by a willing seller to a willing buyer.

There are several types of properties in the municipality – residential, sectional title, non- residential and agriculture. Each is valued on different basis, although they all relate to the market value. For example, residential property (including sectional titles) is valued on a comparable sales method. Most commercial property (including retail, offices, warehousing) are valued on an income basis, while institutional properties such as schools, hospitals and clinics are valued on a cost basis.

When valuing the properties, the Municipal Valuer establishes the market conditions, and this is based on recent sales and market information activity in the various areas. Therefore this will take into consideration areas where values have declined, increased or remained stagnant due to the current state of the economy as on the Valuation date.

Did You Inspect my property?

As this is a mass valuation, the Municipal Valuer uses a computer aided mass appraisal (CAMA) system to determine the values of all properties. This is based on statistical analysis and geographical information systems (GIS), and therefore requires reliable and accurate data.

For residential property, obtaining access to all properties is not possible, and as such, the Municipal Valuer makes use of advanced technology that allows the collection of data. This includes the use of building plans and Pictometry, which is the state of the art 3D aerial photography that allows the valuers to see the properties from all angles, and be able to measure the extents and heights of the buildings, as well as other information relating to quality, condition and other improvements. This is augmented by the used of street level video footage which is collected by driving down each street and recording the street frontages. This method is acceptable in terms of the MPRA, and endorsed by the International Association of Assessing Officers (IAAO) the international body that sets standards to mass appraisal importantly endorses more.

However, in cases where the aerial photography and other imagery is not useable, usually in the cases where properties have a lot of foliage, or high security walls, then physical inspection of the site is undertaken.

The data collection process is independently reviewed for quality assurance purposes to ensure the data collectors are consistent in their approach and the data they record is correct for the subject property.

For non-residential properties, field visits are undertaken to obtain data such as the property use, rentals and financial records of businesses.

What do I do if I disagree with my property valuation?

Legislation makes ample provision for any person to object to an entry in a General Valuation roll, provided that such objection takes place in the prescribed manner and within the prescribed objection period. An objection will be considered by the Municipal Valuer and a Valuation Appeal Board, should a property owner wish to appeal against the findings of the former. Each new valuation roll must be advertised in a prescribed manner, and such roll must be made available to the public for inspection and objection. Once the inspection period has closed no more objections will be accepted.

Specific details on the objection dates and venues will be advised in the individual notices to owners regarding their property valuations (sect 49 notices).

What can’t I object against?

Legislation allows you to object to any entry or omission from the General Valuation Roll but not the roll in total. A property owner can also not object to the rates that you are paying or are due to pay; The Valuation Services directorate does not determine rates. We are responsible for the determination of property values, which are used as the City's rates base by the Rates & Taxes directorate to calculate your rates.

Do I need a Lawyer to represent me at the Appeal Board?

The Appeal Board is not a court of law, and you do not need to bring a lawyer, unless you wish to do so. You may also bring any other expert to assist you during your appeal hearing. However this will be for your own account.

The Valuation Appeal Board will consist of a Chairperson with legal qualifications and sufficient experience in the administration of justice. The remaining members will be made up of not fewer than two and not more than four other members with sufficient knowledge of, or experience in, the valuation of property. At least one must be a professional valuer registered in terms of the Property Valuers Profession Act 47 of 2000.

The Appeal Board is an independent Body appointed by the MEC Local Government.

How long will an objection take to be resolved?

The number of objection received will have an effect on the process period. The Municipal Valuer will review the objections taking in consideration the information that was provided on the objection form.

The outcome of the Municipal Valuer decisions will be mailed to objectors in phases as per completion.

To what extent is the Municipal decision final?

Section 52(2) of the MPRA states that if the Municipal Valuer changes the value of a property that was objected to by more than 10% upwards or downwards the Appeal Board must review the objection, confirm, amend or revoke the decision of the Municipal Valuer.

I have objected to the new value of my property. Must I continue to pay my rates even though I think I am paying too much?

The MPRA Section 50 (6) states:
"The lodging of an objection does not defer liability for payment of rates beyond the date determined for payment".
Therefore the account must still be paid until the objection process has been finalised.
The MPRA Section 55 (2) states :
"If an adjustment in the valuation of a property affects the amount due for rates payable on that property, the municipal manager must :

(a) calculate -
(i) the amount actually paid on the property since the effective date; and
(ii) the amount payable in terms of the adjustment on the property since the effective date ; and
(b) recover from, or repay to, the person liable for the payment of the rate the difference determined in terms of paragraph
(c) plus interest at a prescribed rates.

What is a supplementary valuation?

The City is compelled by legislation to reflect all changes on properties in a Supplementary Valuation Roll. Supplementary valuations are performed during each financial year, according to the relevant legislation, to supplement the current general valuation roll with any new properties and/or changes to property values contained in the current general valuation roll.