Dear Orange County Resident:

As a lifelong resident of Orange County, I know that any discussion of the process of appraising land, homes, and other buildings for tax purposes often generates questions among residents. Such discussions also frequently include taxpayers’ expressions of frustration with, and confusion about, the assessment process. 

It is our goal at Orange County Government to help our residents better understand the process and encourage you to ask any questions.

As you may be aware, at least once every eight years North Carolina requires all its counties to conduct a property revaluation. The market value of properties change, and in order to make sure each homeowner has a clear idea of what their property is actually worth a new appraisal is necessary from time to time.

How is an appraisal conducted? Orange County’sappraisal team divides the county into approximately 1,000 neighborhoods. These neighborhoods are groupings of properties that have many of the same characteristics and react to the market in similar ways. All real estate is appraised at “fair market value,” which is the most probable price a property would bring in a competitive and open market.

The Orange County tax office has been contacting property owners and getting its records updated for the 2017 revaluation. February 29th is the deadline for submitting property listings. This is a 30 day extension, one granted due to the many outstanding questions about the form, and because many of the forms that have been returned have been incomplete or incorrect.

Staff members have been reaching out to property owners to ensure the revaluation is correct and the County has posted videos and information on the Tax Office website (  

Important points to remember:

  • No one will be penalized or charged back taxes for updating information that may have been missed previously. This is not a process intended to generate additional revenue.
  • Property owners will have multiple opportunities to appeal values they think are incorrect, starting with the local tax office and moving up to the county’s Board of Equalization and Review and the N.C. State Property Tax Commission.

Please feel free to contact the Tax Office at 919.245.2725with any and all questions. Thank you for taking part in this important process. 

Chair Earl McKee
Board of Orange County Commissioners