Millions in tax revenue missing due to unreported home

Millions in tax revenue missing due to unreported home

A residential neighborhood on Vermont Avenue in Asheville.

Buncombe County may have missed out on about $450,000 in tax revenue because of an estimated $96 million in unreported home improvements in 2021.

Buncombe County Tax Assessor Keith Miller reported June 14 during the final meeting of the Ad Hoc Reappraisal Committee that many homeowners didn’t report or obtain permits for renovations, leaving the Tax Assessors department to fill in the blanks using multiple listing service data and their own research.

Many of those homeowners had high-value properties that sold for between $500,000 and $1 million.

After  months of discussion during which Miller and Asheville-based economic research firm Urban3 often disagreed, the two recently came to common ground on how to look at property sale evaluations.

“Property owners don’t report (improvements) because, honestly, their taxes are going to go up,” Miller told the committee, a group created by Board of Commissioners to investigative whether or  not the current assessment process was equitable.