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Commercial Property Owners Take Big Hit In Reassessments

(Credit: KDKA)

(Credit: KDKA)

Jon Delano Jon Delano
Jon Delano is a familiar face on KDKA-TV, having been the station's...
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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — If you think residential property owners are taking a hit with incorrect super high reassessments, it’s only worse for the thousands who own commercial real estate in the city.

“The commercial properties in particular are grossly over-assessed, and we think there’s no rhyme or reason for the new numbers that have been placed on them,” says Jonathan Kamin, a real estate attorney.

While residential property values grew by nearly 47 percent, according to county assessors, commercial property skyrocketed 71 percent.

The numbers are so out-of-whack, says Kamin, that he’s taken in 350 new cases in the last 72 hours.

“I get the feeling nobody had any real oversight in checking these numbers,” Kamin told KDKA Money Editor Jon Delano, “and I think it was a computer-generated reassessment and the implementation has been poor at best.”

The Regional Enterprise Tower is the classic example of a miss-assessment. Sold at a sheriff’s sale last year, it practically has no tenants left.

And yet its assessment has nearly quadrupled from $10 million to over $38 million.

“That building would sell somewhere in the $6 to $10 million range,” says Gregg Broujos, a real estate broker.

Broujos sells and manages commercial real estate, and he says the wrong numbers really hurt downtown Pittsburgh.

“It hurts it tremendously just because it’s obviously the epicenter of western PA.”

There lots of examples — like the Oliver Building — just sold last fall for $10 million, now reassessed at nearly $48 million.

Or take PPG Place, recently sold for $179 million, now reassessed at $237 million.

Commercial real estate experts say the solution is simple.

“They have to start over,” says Broujos.

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