Drive-By Appraisals "Approved" in New York!
Property owners have won a battle in a long simmering dispute in New York over pending real estate tax appeals. The case was reported in the BuffaloNews.com. In short, eight property owners with pending tax appeals against the City refused to let the City’s appraiser in their homes in connection with the preparation of the City’s appraisal reports. The City countered that they could not make a fair assessment of property value without an interior inspection. The intermediate appellate court agreed with the property owners reasoning that they were entitled to protection under the Fourth Amendment’s guarantee of privacy.
According to the appellate court, “the city failed to show that its interest in interior inspections outweighed the homeowners’ Fourth Amendment right to privacy, the appellate court ruled.” (BuffaloNews.com). The question that immediately comes to my mind, if the cases proceed to a trial, do the property owners get to undermine the City’s appraiser’s testimony based on his failure to conduct an interior inspection?
Apparently all the owners just wanted the cases, which have been pending for six years, to get resolved. But, the City has vowed an appeal to New York’s highest court, so it does not seem like the end is in sight.