Today was a refreshing day of government transparency and the people’s involvement with its local government. On Friday, September 11th, the CIASF (Commercial & Industrial Association of South Florida) setup a panel discussion on Miami-Dade County tax assessment values. The narrator was Tom Dixon and the panel incuded Stan Beck of Property Tax Consultants, Pedro Garcia of Miami-Dade County Property Appraiser and Robert Mendez of FPTS.
The venue was held at the Bank of America Tower at 100 SE 2nd Street, 19th Floor. The featured panelist was Mr. Garcia who is the County’s first-ever elected Property Appraiser. As someone who helped Mr. Garcia get elected, I am personally very satisfied with the job he is doing. Mr. Garcia has made great efforts to communicate in person with the people and answer questions from knowledgeable real estate professionals like those at the CIASF.
Before the panel discussion, commercial real estate professionals discussed some recent deals. It was announced that First Industrial sold their 156,000 sq. ft. warehouse in Medley for $77 psf all-cash; ComReal sold a 25,000 sq. ft. Opa Locka warehouse in Miami also for all-cash for $45 psf; and Norman Nierenberg bought a 25,000 sq. ft. South Dade warehouse for only $25 psf. It appears that Miami warehouses are starting to sell once again. ComReal Miami presented several large Miami warehouse properties to the audience including 400,000 sq. ft. Beacon 97 Business Park; 180,000 sq. ft. Airport International Center and 127,000 sq. ft. Miami Airport Warehouse building.
Mr. Garcia was disappointed that Miami commercial property assessments did not go down as much as residential properties which saw decreases of over 20%. The county millage rate for commercial properties will stay relatively the same. Their office is currently servicing 7,500 appeals. He suggests that more Miami commercial property owners turn in their rent rolls including incomes and expenses so they that have more information to evaluate. Property owners should be sure to provide any rental concessions, tenant improvement allowances, etc. that could show a decrease in value to property thus lowering the assessment.
It was nice to see that the audience and the appraiser’s office seem very aware that commercial property and business owners pay many other taxes in addition to property taxes. The overall sentiment of the group is that Miami-Dade County and it’s local municipalities need to stop taking more money from the tax payers. The average operating expenses for Miami warehouse buildings range from $1.95 to $3.50 psf depending on size, class, etc. Property taxes is always the largest component of these expenses. It was also stated that the overall county assessment value has decreased from $245B to $214B.
Most importantly, if you plan to appeal, be sure to hire a real estate professional that knows what they are doing and it needs to be done this week before Friday, September 18th which is the deadline. For more information, please visit the Miami Dade County Appraiser’s website at www.miamidade.gov/pa.
As a Director on the CIASF Board, one of my assignments is to look for other quality speakers, sponsors and venues. If you have any suggestions, please contact me anytime at 786-433-2379.