April 16, 2017

Three or four years of property value increases and corresponding property tax increases in Jasper County are putting some people out of a place to live.  For the past two weeks The Monticello News has had approximately 110 properties (3 and 1/2 pages) up for sale for failure to pay their property taxes.  As taxes continue to increase, more people will be unable to pay the bill.

Jasper County’s chief appraiser, Lynn Bentley, warned us in an article dated March 30, 2017 that she felt property values should be increased AGAIN this year, and the notices received in the mail Friday confirm they were raised.  (See that article at the end of this blog) 

The Jasper County BOC continues to promise that the millage rate is not going to increase.  They do not have to increase the millage when the values go up as significantly as they have.  The increasing values automatically give the BOC more tax money out of our pockets. 

 On Monday, April 17 the BOC will again discuss the $7.5 million bond/loan, a $4 million SPLOST, and the new FY 2018 budget.  They will never have enough money, but the property owners of this county have about been drained dry.

There are things you can do to fight these increasing values and corresponding tax increases.  Those things will be listed in an upcoming blog. 

 Tax Digest Will Change for 2017

Chief Appraiser

March 30, 2017
For 2017, we are continuing to see an improving market. The total number of sales is up again as well. From 2015 to 2016, the number of sales used increased 10 percent. For 2016 to 2017, it has increased 15 percent. 

There continues to be a decrease in bank sales also. These are no longer setting the market. We are using 217 sales this year and only 14 are bank sales. There are bargains out there, but there are fewer and fewer of them. 

We clearly have two types of property that were hot sellers for 2017. They were Turtle Cove Interior houses and houses on Northern Rural tracts, particularly on small tracts. These will see the largest increases for 2017. Interestingly, these are also the properties that saw the most dramatic changes during the downturn. 

Again this year, I did a comparison with the proposed new values and current listings on MLS. I compared 64 properties. Some have listing prices that are close to the new values. But, most are listed for $20k to $70k more than the new values.

And as a reminder, there were concerns about the changes that were implemented last year. Those increases were applied and now this year, there are many areas that are selling for more than those values. This is why it is so important to follow the market on a yearly basis. You can get behind on values very quickly if they are not evaluated each year. 


City of Monticello: No changes for any of the city neighborhoods. There were sales over the current values, but there were sales for less than the current values as well. This was the case within most neighborhoods. I feel we should hold off on any changes until there is a clearer trend in the city. 

5 acre “Farms”: There were sales in all eight of these neighborhoods. Land increases will be applied for Hawk’s Nest, Lake Ridge, North Jasper Farms, Deep Lake Farms, Barnes Mountain Farms and Liberty Drive. Also, structure increases will be applied in Rock Eagle Farms, Liberty Drive, and Lake Ridge.

County Line Subdivisions: Structure increases will be applied for Jones Estates. There were three sales in that neighborhood last year, all sold for almost 20% more than the current values. There will also be structure increases for Ashwood Meadows and Bobcat Estates based on this activity. 

Turtle Cove Interior: No change for lot values. Structure increases will be applied for all Interior houses. On improved lots, there were 35 sales last year and only six sold for less than the current value, two of which were bank sales. Most of the sales ranged anywhere from 10 percent to 25 percent over current values. 
Lakefront Neighborhoods: 2016 saw quite a lot of activity with lakefront sales. There were sales in most neighborhoods. In some areas the sales were slightly over current values, others were as much as 20-30 percent over current values. Lot increases will be applied for the following: Waters Bridge/212, Alcovy Shores 2 (cove), Alcovy Bluffs (Dallas/Yancey), Landers, Pine Grove, Templeton Heights, and Fisherman’s Point (dam). Structure increases will be applied for Water’s Bridge/212, Alcovy Bluffs, Fisherman’s Point, Turtle Cove, and Alcovy North. There were also sales in Rollingwood Cove, Southern Pines, and Alcovy Shores (front) that sold for very close to current values. 


Improvement Changes:  
There were 33 improved sales on the North side, with most selling for 5-30 percent over the current values. There were 10 improved sales on the South side, with most selling for 5-15 percent over the current values. Structure increases will be applied for all rural tracts. 

Land Value Changes: Last year we only increased the large tracts (over 30 acres). The market seems to have cooled for large tracts. There were some sales over current values, but there were as many under current values. No changes for large tracts countywide. 

This year we are seeing a major change on small tracts in the North. During the downturn, the gap was narrowing for the values between the North and the South. But that may be changing. This year, every vacant sale on the North sold for more than current value. Increases will be applied for small tracts on the North. For the Southside small tract sales, there were some sales for more than current vales, but as many for less. No changes for small tracts on the South. 


There were six usable commercial sales this year. Two of the sales were for more than the current value, two sold for very close to current values and two sold for less than the current value. No changes for commercial.


Citizens, be informed and stay informed!  Only by being informed, can the citizens understand what is being done and talked about, and then press our officials to make good decisions for everyone in Jasper County.  That is our goal with the Taxdogs blog.



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  1. Samuel Hay says:

    A friend finally reached some degree of financial success. Decided she would reward herself with a new Mercedes. Goes to get her tag. TAX ON THE CAR WAS $7000.00! I only paid $10,000 for my first home…
    Do these commissioners ever have meetings with, “How to save taxpayer dollars” on the Agenda?

    • Mo Debt Is Yo Debt (Think about it) says:

      Commissioners only have one agenda and that is transferring wealth from taxpayers to to their crony handlers. They have been wrong about economic growth for the last three decades, but yet here they are spending more future tax money that may never be collected. . You’d think for once these so called “representatives” would actually do a little economic research on their own instead of merely parroting talking points on issues they clearly do not understand. One has to wonder do these people ever read anything outside of a fast food menu? Apparently not, or they’d be curtailing spending instead of ramping it up.

      11 Facts That Prove The 2017 US Economy Is In Far Worse Shape Than It Was In 2016

  2. Taxed Out Of My Home says:

    I don’t want to knock any who migrate from the metro Atlanta to rural Jasper County, but the metro job market does offer more lucrative career opportunities for those willing to live in such a congested concrete environment while Jasper County employment has traditionally been in the moderate to low income ranges. And, now some of those people, looking to escape the congestion and crime of big city living have come to Jasper County and invested huge chunks of their retirement income in large and expensive homes outside the norms of the modest homes local citizens have normally built.

    It’s great that people looking to resettle find Jasper County a desirable place to move, but what is not great is Lynn Bentley using the cost of newly arrived neighbors expensive new homes as an excuse to continually raise our taxes beyond out ability to pay. Families of modest income who for generations have lived and worked in Jasper County are now being priced out of their homes simply because a new arrival who retired from a lucrative job outside of Jasper County can afford to build a huge expensive home 20 miles from theirs. Lynn Bentley likes to call this a trend. I call it disgusting and punitive of those natives who were here first. Punishing people for the size and cost of their neighbors new home is wrong regardless the excuse.

  3. Don't make it worse says:

    How ironic that some folks want to spend money we don’t have to get ready for growth.
    Yet, they seem unconcerned about holding on to people that are already here, some of them for a very long time.

  4. Who cares? says:

    I would also like an answer to this question. My taxes, just my taxes, come to $242 plus dome change a month, what does that get me? My road isn’t very good and the road to my road is even worse. So will someone please tell me what my $242 a month gets me? No groceries comes to mind or no electricity. Or no car, or no clothes to wear should I continue?

    • Not an ATM says:

      I feel your pain. Our taxes will go up about the same as yours unless the BOC and School board lower the millage rate.

      When the home values plummeted, the millage rate had to be raised to bring in enough money to run the county. As the assessments have gone up, the millage rates should have been lowered accordingly, but this BOC never did that. They even raised it a few times. Therefore, our taxes have gone up and up.

      We continue to vote for the same people, so we will continue to see the taxes go up.

  5. Who cares? says:

    Mine went up $344 this year and about the same amount last year and I forget what it was the year before that and on and on and on. I’m struggling to put it on out there! Between my homeowners insurance and my property taxes I’m going to lose my home. The home I planned to finish my life in. The home I love. But it is inevitable. My mortgage payment is doable, but add the other two ( which for the record is a little more than the mortgage) and I’m toast just waiting to burn. How can I even sell the place? I know I always asked about taxes, utilities etc associated with a place before I purchased. Once a prospective buyer sees this history they will run, not walk away. I will attempt to sell, give it my best pitch, but bottom line looks like the bank will end up with it and I’m burnt toast with flames. This just breaks my heart and spirit! The BOC can shove their wants and tax increases where the sun doesn’t shine. When we all lose our places because of them, what will they do then? I know they don’t care and would just laugh and I for the life of me don’t see anything funny about it!

    • Charity Is Looking Out For Your Neighbor says:

      We constantly hear how this charity or that charity collected canned goods, clothing or cash for the Jasper poor, but where are these do-gooders when folks are struggling to keep a roof over their heads? It is great to have a belly full of pinto beans and rice, but it is just as important to have to have protection from the weather and a place to rest your weary head that you can call your own.

      While these conceited pillars of the community sit in their progressive churches babbling on about their great charitable works, Forward, Smart Growth and Strategic Planning, their neighbors suffer the growing cost of their silly village plan and are in real danger of losing their homes.

      In the progressive church hierarchy, built on recognition and pride, tolerance of all forms of deviant behavior and newsworthy charity have replaced the worship of Christ and true Christian charity . The appearance of being charitable now outweighs the act itself.

      People who where born on third base and think they hit a home run are the source of this nonsense. These people have never broken their backs or busted their knuckles on a 40 hour a week grind. They have never had to choose between paying the light bill or fixing a leaky roof. These self-appointed village planners have become increasingly out of touch with the reality of many Jasper County homeowners, who now suffer from anxiety and depression over the mounting cost of living in what was once a predominately working class community. These progressives love to ramble about “community” and “unity”, yet their divisive actions speak otherwise.

      Jasper County has devolved from what was once rural community of caring working class citizens into a callous community dominated by pompous asses who seek to class cleanse Jasper County by making the cost of living here unaffordable for the working class.

      By drastically raising property values every year and spending tax revenue 40 or 50 years before it’s collected, tools of the self-serving Smart Growthers, Lynn Bentley and the Board of Commissioners are making sure that working class homeowners have no future in Jasper County.

      For those wondering how we got here, this is the cost of ignoring the politics of local government. Just because you do not take an interest in politics doesn’t mean politics won’t take an interest in you. Ignore your local government at your own peril.

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