Property values decrease in Rock County
Percentage change in equalized property values in Rock and Walworth counties:
Year Walworth Rock
2006 13.78 percent 8.13 percent
2007 10.14 percent 2.38 percent
2008 5.65 percent 9.55 percent
2009 0.93 percent - 0.88 percent
JANESVILLE Property values in Rock County dropped in 2009, only the second time in 50 years the county experienced shrinking property values, an official said Friday.
Rock County had a 0.88 percent decrease in equalized property value, falling from $10.7 billion to $10.6 billion.
“The equalized value is a reflection of market value of the underlying classes of property, such as residential, commercial, industrial and agricultural properties,” said Phil Boutwell, assistant Rock County administrator.
The loss is primarily due to declining home prices. The last time Rock County had a decline in equalized property values was in the mid-80s, when agricultural property values decreased significantly, he said.
Nationally, home values dropped by about 7.1 percent, according to the report developed by the state Department of Revenue. In Wisconsin, residential property values fell $4.9 billion, a decrease of a little more than 1 percent.
The annual report shows Wisconsin property values have fallen by 0.48 percent to $511.9 billion. Manitowoc County had the biggest increase at 4.57 percent and Pierce County had the biggest drop at 5.91 percent.
Statewide, commercial property values grew 3 percent from new construction with a total increase of 2 percent. Recreational and waterfront properties remained stable, the report says, with undeveloped lands increasing by 0.67 percent and forest areas decreasing by 0.81 percent.
In Walworth County, property values still are on the rise, but the increase fell sharply and hit its lowest point since at least 1999, County Administrator Dave Bretl said.
Walworth County experienced the lowest increase in property values since at least 2000, closing with a 0.93 percent increase to $15.6 billion in 2009.
“We’ve seen dramatic increases in equalized values in recent years,” County Administrator Dave Bretl said. “Even last year, in the beginning of the housing and real estate crisis, we were still at 5.6 percent (increase).”
Last year, only one county in the state had negative growth, Bretl said.
“This year, you see a lot more counties where the equalized value decreased,” he said.
The lowest value increase that comes to mind was a 3.64 percent increase in 2000, Bretl said.
Still, Bretl said the 2009 number could be interpreted in a positive light.
“This is good nationally, where the decrease is about 7 percent,” he said.