Real estate tax reassessments are coming this year in Floyd County and homeowners expecting to see a drop in real estate values are in for sticker shock.

Real estate values, at least in the eyes of the tax assessor, will most likely go up in Floyd County just as they are everywhere else in the area.

County administrator Dan Campbell tells me he expects the new assessments, when they come in, to be higher than the last round four years ago.

Which, of course, begs the question: If real estate and home prices are dropping around the country, how can the values go up here?

Good question. In some areas of Southwestern Virginia, tax reassessments have raised home values as much as 600 percent. Although land and home values are dropping in Carroll County, the assessor there has raised values on the tax roles by more than 300 percent over the last three years.

Roanoke County’s tax rate went up a more modest 2.75 percent last year but even that flies in the face of economic reality where the prices of homes have plummeted in recent months.

We hired a private appraisal firm to assess our home a little over a year ago. The appraisal showed the value of the house and property had dropped since 2004 even though we have made numerous improvements to the property.

Real estate taxes are the primary source of revenue for most county governments. Tax assessors are under pressure to provide assessments that produce more, not less, revenue for cash-strapped government coffers.

Are the new assessments real or a case of smoke and mirrors? That’s a question we all need to ask when these re-evaluations of our properties come in.