In the 25 years I have been in real estate, I have found that tax assessments have little or nothing to do with the current market value of a house. Tax assessments are just one of the means by which the city determines your real estate tax bill.
Market value is based primarily on three factors. The first factor is location and the value of surrounding property. The second factor is the size or square footage of above ground living space. The third factor is condition and features by comparison to surrounding property.
By having a qualified real estate agent representing you, you should be able to review printouts on recent comparable sales that your agent will research and see how closely those properties compare and what they sold for. In this manner, you will be able to do two things. First you can make the most intelligent choice regarding an offer amount because you and your agent have done your homework in advance. Second, you can now use this documentary evidence to help the seller see why they should take your offer because you can now prove the market value of their home to them.
If you are currently unrepresented by an agent, I would appreciate the opportunity to apply for the job of representing you. If you have further questions, I look forward to hearing from you.
Stephen P. Smith, Jr.
Keller Williams Realty
401-785-1700 ext 440