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Over-Valuations by the Valuer-General

Radio News Broadcast

John Darley, Former Valuer-General (ABC RADIO ADELAIDE 9.16-9.21) Over-valuations by the Valuer-General

(Bevan: ... John Darley ... is this just an issue for people in regional South Australia who can be the victims of boom and bust ... ) No, it’s not. I’ve noticed in recent times that the Valuer-General’s valuations certainly in country areas ... is much higher than sale prices and in fact I saw one the other day at Port Wakefield where the valuations of vacant land there were 100% higher than the actual sale prices. You’ll find also in the northern suburbs of Adelaide and the southern suburbs of Adelaide that those valuations are in a lot of cases higher than the actual sale prices ... (Bevan: ... at Port Wakefield the valuation was 100% higher than the actual sale price ... and you’re saying it might not be that great but there are significant over-pricing by the Valuer-General in the northern and southern suburbs.) In actual fact there’s been an admission by the Valuer-General that they dropped the ball over the last ten years or so because in the budget last year Treasury awarded the Valuer-General an additional $2.8 million for 16/17 financial year to fix up the relativity of these valuations and that’s continuing on this year ... the valuations really don’t have any great impact on rates and taxes unless the relativity is out between properties because ... you could have the Valuer-General’s valuations 50% higher than market or 50% lower as long as they were consistent but the trouble is if you’ve got a mixture of these. The only area where the Valuer-General’s valuations have a direct impact on revenue is with land tax and we know for example they’re concentrating on the city of Adelaide this year and it was reported to the Property Council that some valuations of site value ... will increase 100% and that will directly impact land tax because it may not be 100% increase in land tax payable but it could be 300%. (Bevan: ... we’ve got a statement here. We did ask to speak to the Valuer-General Delfina Lanzilli but she wasn’t available ... the statement says ‘the Valuer-General values properties as at 1st January each year and market conditions may change following this date which may lead to property owners believing their valuations are higher than market. In the instances where property owners believe their value is too high they can object to their value by lodging and objection in writing to the Valuer-General within 60 days of receiving their first rates notice. A representative of the Valuer-General will then review the valuation and should this result in a change in the valuation the rating authorities are advised and the rate amount adjusted accordingly.’ So is there anything to worry about here ...) That’s a bit of a problem in itself because I don’t know whether there’s a lot of objections being lodged but I know for example that it’s taking ... I know of objections that were lodged two months ago and they haven’t been dealt with yet. (Bevan: ... what’s it cost?) It doesn’t cost anything to lodge a valuation but if you’re unsuccessful the only redress you have is to go to the SA Commercial and Administrative Tribunal and the fee there is about $71/72 ... (Bevan: ... so it’s time consuming, not an awful lot of money ...) Certainly if anyone’s concerned about the value of their property or even in the case if they’ve got a property that’s similar to one that sold down the road and there’s a difference in valuation they should object as a matter of course to make sure it’s correct. (Bevan: ... thank you ...)