Consider this if you are appealing your municipal property valuation
Johannesburg City Councilor Tim Truluck has shared some useful information on what he refers to as the Dreaded Section 52 Review.
He says it may be triggered depending on how much you may have succeeded in reducing your municipal home valuation. If you have received the outcome of your Valuation Objection and it has been reduced (or even increased) by more than 10% then the Appeal Board becomes involved
Section 52(2) of the MPRA states that if the Municipal Valuer changes the value of a property that was objected to by more than 10% upwards or downwards, the Appeal Board must review the objection, confirm, amend or revoke the decision of the Municipal Valuer.
The councilor says the problem is that Section 52 Review is often held years later (it can be up to 7 years) behind closed doors without you knowing about it. Your only recourse to reverse is via the High Court.
A value reversal
Often the Review Board reverses the new lower value, and reinstates the higher one, and you get a bill for tens of thousands of rand - backdated to the date of the review board decision. You therefore have to appeal to avoid the section 52 Review. If you appeal, you will be called into an Appeal Board hearing in a year or two, where you can present your case yourself (or via a representative appointed by you) where you will get a fair and open hearing. The point is that you need to take the initiative before the Section 52 Review occurs.
This will circumvent the dreaded Section 52 Review, says Truluck.
An actual outcome
As an example, he refers to a copy of an actual outcome letter. It reflects a successful objection which resulted in a reduction in valuation from R3,438-million to R2,8-million. The owner is happy with the valuation. But it triggered a Section 52 Review - so she HAS TO APPEAL, says Truluck. In this case, the estate agent's valuations were R2,5-million and R2,6-million - so the reason for the appeal is straightforward. She is not happy with the R2,8-million and wants it reduced, he adds.
Author: Ronald Ennik