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6. Glossary

Assessor Pages

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1.  Assessments
     How assessments are determined. 

2.  Exemptions
     Common exemptions available.

3.  Assessment Cycle
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4.  Data Collection
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     Property Sales
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5.  Resources
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6.  Glossary
Common Terms

Adjusted sales price The selling price of a comparable property adjusted to reflect differences in inventory, location and time as compared to the subject.

Arm’s length  Refers to a real estate transaction in the open market freely arrived at by normal negotiations without undue pressure on either the buyer or the seller.

Comparable Sale (Comparables, “Comps”)  A property which has sold recently and is sufficiently similar to the subject of an appraisal so that its adjusted selling price may be taken as an indication of the market value of the subject.

Fair market value The most probable price, expressed in terms of money, that a property would bring if exposed for sale in the open market in an arm's-length transaction between a willing seller and a willing buyer, both of whom are knowledgeable concerning all the uses to which it is adapted and for which it is capable of being used.  [From “Property Assessment Valuation” published by the International Association of Assessing Officers.]  Synonymous with “Market Value.

Market Data approach An appraisal process whereby the value of a subject property is predicated on the adjusted (for time and inventory differences) selling prices of comparable properties.  Also known as the “Direct Sales Comparison Approach.”

Market Value That price in an open market at which a willing buyer would buy and a willing seller would sell, neither being under abnormal pressure and both being fully informed.

Most Probable selling price The amount for which a property would be most likely to sell if exposed on the open market as of appraisal date.

 Price Usually the amount of money which is given in exchange for the right to receive specified goods or services.  The amount of money that is exchanged when a sale is consummated.  Infrequently, the consideration may consist of something other than money (barter).  Price is not necessarily the same as value.

Qualified Sale A sale which meets the following criteria and may, thus, be considered an acceptable indicator of value and a qualified sale:
1. The sale took place on the open market.
2. Neither buyer nor seller was under any undue pressure for any reason.
3. The property was exposed on the market for a reasonable period of time.
4. Both the buyer and seller had adequate knowledge of the uses to which the property might be put and its current condition.
5. Consideration consisted of cash or cash equivalents.
6. There was no “love and affection” consideration (as in a sale between relatives).

Real Estate (real property) Real estate is term that generally refers to the land, including all inherent natural attributes and other man-made improvements permanently attached to the land. Real estate is often considered synonymous with real property that includes the land and everything growing on it, attached to it or erected on it but not including anything that may be severed from the land without injuring it. The terms real estate and real property are used primarily in common law, while civil law jurisdictions refer instead to immovable property.

 Sale Price The amount, in dollars, for which title to a property is actually conveyed.  Not necessarily market value.

Sales Comparison Approach See “Market Data Approach.”

Verified Sale A sale whose pertinent data has been confirmed by consultation with the buyer, seller or an authorized agent of either party.