Assessed values for Fiscal 2022 are as of January 1st, 2021. They are based upon the calendar 2020 sales of similar properties. The property that sold in your neighborhood last month is not considered in the current assessments. Unlike a "Fee Appraisal" for a mortgage, Assessor's utilize "Mass Appraisal". Assessors analyze an entire year's sales, looking at assessment to sales ratios and different property characteristics. The analysis compares similar properties using factors such as size, location, style, age, quality and condition. Utilizing a CAMA (Computer Assisted Mass Appraisal) system, they apply this analysis equitably across all the properties in Town. The effectiveness of this relies on accurate data to evaluate that people paid X for Y.
Valuation in Massachusetts is based on "full and fair cash value", or the amount a willing buyer would pay a willing seller on the open market. Determining the "full and fair cash value" involves reviewing the sales of similar properties (the market approach to value), what the property would cost today to replace (the cost approach to value), and for income-producing properties, a knowledge of current economic conditions such as rental and vacancy rates, current interest rates, and the rate of return a potential purchaser can expect to receive on their investment (the income approach to value). The Assessor does not create value. Rather, he/she has the responsibility to discover and reflect the changes that are occurring in the marketplace.
In the Town of Westborough, for new construction, or properties that have permit activity due to additions, pools, or any type of improvement to the property, the assessment is based upon the status of the property as of July 1st of any given year.