Learn from people who fought their Jackson County assessments and won

Published: Jul. 31, 2023 at 7:41 PM CDT
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KANSAS CITY, Mo. (KCTV) - More than 43,000 people are appealing their assessments. That number will continue to grow until 11:59 Monday night, as some homeowners challenge large increases.

John Welchert is one of them.

“I filed a Sunshine Request,” said Welchert. “That was a very important piece of information, because I knew what they had in the file that pertained to my property.”

Welchert appealed the values on two duplexes and his personal home, all in Blue Springs.

He’s baffled how his duplexes, which sit side by side, were valued differently. One rose in value to $321,000 and the other to $361,000. They were built the same year, sit side by side, and are even painted the same color. He claims the county representative struggled to figure out what took place, too.

“She said, ‘I don’t understand how it’s working. I don’t understand what the problem is,’” said Welchert.

Welchert said he learned there was a lack of proof of a true physical inspection on all three properties.

He also was able to challenge the county’s comps and found his own comps. He still questions the process.

“It’s horrible it’s so complicated,” Welchert said. “It’s a fiasco mess!”

John and the county settled on $172,00 for his duplexes. He also successfully lowered the assessment on his personal home, which went from $350,000 down to $243,000.

(KCTV5 News)

KCTV5 Investigates also connected with Vickie Haynes.

She recalled her meeting with the county assessment office.

“This is wrong. This is wrong. This is wrong. This is wrong. Now, would you like to hear the truth? And, I’ll prove it to you,” said Haynes.

Haynes showed us her binder of information. It’s so thorough it has tabbed sections.

Haynes ranch in Lee’s Summit jumped in value from $210,000 to $390,000. She calculates it would take three social security checks to pay her new tax bill.

Haynes discussed the sleepless nights and time it took to unravel Jackson County’s “information.”

She discovered her square footage and number of bathrooms was wrong.

A Sunshine Request revealed the comparable properties were further than a mile away and didn’t match her ranch home. Some were younger or recently gutted and fully remodeled. She also discovered their assessed values didn’t come close to their recent sales prices.

“And, by the way, that happened with every single property I looked at,” said Haynes.

Haynes also got bids for all the repairs and upgrades she would need to be a top-value home.

Her new assessment is $260,000.

(KCTV5 News)

Haynes still questions the quality of the work she saw.

“If any business did this kind of work, they’d be out of work,” said Haynes.

John Welchert agrees and questions who’s holding the assessment department accountable.

“Who are they responsible to? Frank White? What is Mr. White doing?” questioned Welchert.