Fiscal Services - Assessing
Assessing Department - Phone: 989-837-3334
Glossary of Common Tax Terms*
*The definitions provided on this and other Assessor Department web pages are merely general explanations of common tax terms used by the City of Midland.
They are not meant to be construed as legally-binding explanations.
Appeal by Letter: You may appeal your property assessment or
taxable value to the local Board of Review in person (by appointment) or by
letter. The Board of Review meets the second Monday in March each year for the
purpose of considering appeals.
Assessed Value: By State Statute, this is fifty percent (50%) of
Board of Review: A local board comprised of property owners that
meets each year during March for the purpose of hearing appeals on the assessed
value of property by property owners.
Consumer Price Index (CPI): A measure of inflation used by the State
of Michigan to cap annual increases in taxable value.
Homestead (Principal Residence) Exemption: (Now called
principal residence exemption) Michigan statute allows owners of homes to
exempt up to 18 mills of tax levied for school operating expenditures. In
Midland, because of voter-approved millages, principal residence exemptions are
reduced to just under 13 mills.
Homeowner's Principal Residence Exemption Affidavit must be filed
in order to be considered for the exemption. The exemption will remain in effect until
it is rescinded. You are responsible for rescinding the exemption once you no longer own or occupy your principal residence.
The exemption also applies to all owned parcels
that are contiguous to your residence.
Market Value: The typical open market selling price of similar
houses in a neighborhood.
Mill: A mill is equal to $1 per $1,000 of taxable value. The basic formula to arrive
at your tax bill is as follows:
Taxable Value x Millage Rate = Tax Bill
Millage Rate: The millage rate is the total of all mills
requested by various governmental entities, as well as any voter-approved
special millages. In
Midland, there are
multiple governmental entities that receive tax monies
generated by millages.
millage rates for the current year, click here.
Non-Homestead (non-Principal Residence) Status: If your
property does not qualify for the Principal Residence Exemption, you will be
required to pay the full 18 mills of tax levied for school operating
expenditures. Non-principal residence status applies to businesses, people owning vacant land that is not adjacent to their
homestead, owners of second homes and other non-owner occupied properties.
Parcel Identification Number (PIN): A unique number identifying a
specific property on the assessment and tax rolls,
and used to identify a particular
parcel's location within the city of Midland per the
City's assessing map.
Proposal A: In 1994, Michigan voters passed Proposal A, which changed the State's
constitution. Proposal A shifted some of the tax burden off of property and onto
the sales tax, which rose from four (4) to six (6) cents on every dollar spent.
It also resulted in the development of a new way of calculating property taxes
using what's known as a property's taxable value (see definition below).
State Equalized Value (SEV): The SEV is the Assessed Value that has
been adjusted or “equalized” by the County and State through a process that
assures that assessments, for every class of property, are uniformly assessed at
50% of true cash value.
After the assessment rolls of local jurisdictions are reviewed and approved
(through the equalization process) by the County and State, the Assessed Values
become the State Equalized Values.
Tax Day: December 31 is called "tax day." The status of a
property on December 31 determines the following year’s values and taxes. A
property's status can be determined by the existence of structures on the
property, the condition of those structures, and local market influences.
Taxable Value (TV): The value used to calculate property taxes.
By Michigan statute, the taxable value is to be calculated based on the prior
year’s taxable value. A property's
taxable value for a given year is last year’s taxable value times the Consumer
Price Index, or 5 percent, whichever is less.
Uncapping: The year following a transfer of ownership, the
taxable value of a property is
raised to equal its assessed value. This is called "uncapping" a property's
taxable value. Uncapping can
raise the taxes on a newly purchased parcel.
For example, let's assume a home is purchased in 2000. At that time, the
assessed value on the home is $35,000 and the taxable value is $24,359. In
the year following the sale - in this instance, 2001 - the assessed value goes up to $37,500, and the taxable value also
increases to $37,500. The tax amount on this parcel would also see an
increase - by $618.94 for a Principal Residence (Homestead).
new homeowners are not aware of this and may be
surprised when their tax bill
reflects such a large increase
in taxes due.