Revealing rating valuations

If you live in the Whangarei district you, like me, have probably just received your new rating valuation in the post. If you haven’t yet, it will be in the post soon!

Your rates are based on a valuation of your property. The Whangarei District Council changed valuation service provider on 1 August 2017 to Opteon. Opteon perform three-yearly property revaluations to reflect changing market values.

The valuations are a snapshot of the market as at 1 September in the year of revaluation – in this case 1st September 2018.

WDC use standard rating valuations to provide ‘fair, transparent and independent property ratings.’ These ratings are governed by the Rating Valuations Act 1998, and audited by the Office of the Valuer-General.

The district is revalued every three years and after the 2012-2015 revaluation, the capital value of Whangārei’s properties rose by almost 10 per cent in three years, with the district’s 40,328 properties worth $19 billion.

Your rating valuation

Every property owner in the country will receive a notice of their new rating valuation once every three years. The land value will be reflected in your Rates Assessment Notice beginning 1 July 2019.

Whangārei District Council revenue manager Alison Puchaux explains that “Opteon uses recent property sales data, resource/building consent and survey data along
with carrying out sample inspections to establish an updated view of values across our district.”

Capital Value

WDC defines the capital value as ‘the probable price that would be paid for the property as at the date of the latest general revaluation. It does not include chattels, stock, crops, machinery or trees.’

Land Value

This is ‘the probable price that would be paid for the bare land as at the date of valuation.’

The Land Value includes any development work which may have been carried out, such as draining, excavation, filling, retaining walls, reclamation, grading, levelling, clearing of vegetation, fertility build-up, or protection from erosion or flooding.

Value of improvements

This is the difference between the capital value and the land value. It reflects the value of the property’s buildings and other structures. The most common types of improvements would be dwellings, other buildings, fencing etc.

The WDC forward details of all building consents to Opteon. When renovation work is complete, Opteon valuers will inspect the property and amend the valuation to account for the work. If un-consented work has been carried out, this will not be reflected in the rating valuation.

If you’ve done major work on your home that didn’t require consent, for example some kitchen redecorating, this won’t have been considered in the re-valuation however you can contact Council to have the improvements considered in the next valuation if you wish.

Lodging an objection to your valuation

If you are unhappy with either the land or capital valuation of your property, you can lodge an objection with Council. The mayor of Whangarei, Sheryl Mai, welcomes you to come in and view the district valuation rolls until February 15, 2019 during office hours at Forum North on Rust Ave.

If you’d like to lodge an objection this must be done in writing before February 15th. Objection forms are available from Whangārei District Council customer services or online at

A Registered Valuers perspective

A registered valuer is able to provide you with a more accurate valuation, taking into consideration improvements (that didn’t require consent) and possibly even deterioration. This is important when dealing with deceased estate sales and properties with unusual features. Whilst the valuation of smaller blocks can be reasonably accurate with the R.V, large farms and lifestyle blocks can be much harder to value so can often be inaccurately valued by service providers who only view a small sample of properties. The fencing of water ways can add huge value to properties but this is something that, because it doesn’t require consent, would not be considered in the council valuation. On the other hand, these large properties can also lose value due to gorse, weeds etc.

But is this what my property is really worth?

As every property is not inspected individually, your rating valuation should be considered a benchmark or starting point if you are considering selling your property. For example, two similar-sized properties with similar sized dwellings, on the same street, will likely be valued similarly. One of these properties may have been immaculately maintained while the other has not been cared for at all. These are the kinds of details not considered in your ratings valuations but that our sales specialists will look at. Contact us today to discuss your rating valuation and we can look at providing a more personalised, detailed appraisal of your property.

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