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Jackson County homeowner describes property tax assessment appeal after 775% increase

KSHB 41 followed up with the Aly family
Christi Aly shows where her home needs repairs
Posted at 5:41 PM, Sep 13, 2023
and last updated 2023-09-14 09:50:35-04

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Christi Aly is preparing for her first child, but it's hard to focus on nesting when her home's foundation is cracking.

"This wall is bowing out and has cracks in the bricks, and you can actually see it from the other side from inside our living room," Aly said while pointing at the slope of the bricks.

The bowing wall on the outside of the Aly's home

When she and her husband, Cameron, received their property tax assessment for their Montgall Avenue home back in June, they were shocked to see the county put a market value of their home at around $157,000. It was a sharp increase from previous years, as their property tax assessment went up 775%.

We met the family in June when they appealed. Two months later, they just had their hearing at the end of August.

"They brought it (market value) down to $100,000," Aly said. "We were … yes, we will take it."

Aly said they noticed their house was being compared to new builds in the area with new foundations, private driveways and more.

"Our house is not a new build," Aly said. "It’s over 100 years old."

She said gathering estimates to lower the assessment was her full-time job this summer.

Caroline Hogan and Christi Aly, as she explains the home repair estimates

"Just trying to figure out, 'OK, who can we get out here to come look at the plumbing? To look at [the] foundation?'" she said.

But even getting those estimates can be pricey. Aly called it a gamble, especially if it has the opposite effect and brings the assessment up.

"Will this actually have a return on my investment?" she questioned. "I don’t know, it’s a risk."

That's why the Alys are still hesitant to have a structural engineer come by and inspect their bowing wall.

"That was just not an expense that we could afford right now, for a repair that we, also, likely can’t afford right now," Aly said.

Especially with a baby on the way.

"Just trying to pay the property taxes will be enough, you know, in addition to medical bills and diapers," she said.

So for now, repairs are out of the picture. Family comes first.