Plato Township Assessment Process

As the Assessor, my job is to place an assessment on all properties in Plato Township. An Assessment is “33 1/3% of the fair cash value of property, as determined by the Illinois Department of Revenue sales ratio studies for the 3 most recent years preceding the assessment year.” Please remember that the “fair cash value” does not necessarily mean what your property is worth on today’s market. The value is based on an average of what properties have been selling at for the past three years. This is not the same as an Appraisal, which determines the value of a house based on home sales for the past 6 months to 1 year. An Assessor does what is called mass appraisal. We look at all homes in an area or neighborhood and assess them all together. Suppose three identical homes were sold in three different years: one homeowner bought their home in 2017 for $350,000, another bought in 2018 for $300,000, and the third bought in 2019 for $250,000. These three homes should be assessed at $300,000, or the average of all three housing prices. This law ensures that people will pay taxes based on uniformity, rather than the ups and downs of the housing market.

For the 2020 assessments we are looked at sales that occurred in 2017, 2018, and 2019. These sales are analyzed and compared with their assessed values and their sale cost per square foot. These sales are categorized by story height, size, location, models, and so on. We develop a range of cost per square foot and then make sure all similar homes fall into the same cost per square foot range. By following this method we hope to create a uniform assessment process.

The ultimate purpose of the assessed value is to proportion the tax burden, as established by the taxing bodies, over all property in a fair and equitable manner.

Janet Roush, CIAO
Plato Township Assessor