Normal Property Tax Assessments

by:  Diane Benjamin

As previously reported, the Town of Normal paid $725,000 for the Underwood House, at the time it was appraised for Real Estate tax purposes at $480,225.  (

Are the assessed values that bad in Normal?  I decided to look at some recent property sales in Normal to see.  Also included are a few of the more expensive sales in Bloomington for comparison:


The assessed value and sales price will never match, but they should always be as close as possible to prevent some homeowners from paying more than their fair share and others paying far less.

The question remains:  How was the assessed value of the Underwood House almost $250,000 less than Normal paid for it?  The assessed value for recent sales aren’t nearly as far off.  Here is the assessed value history of the Underwood property as reported on the County Assessor website:

Payable in 2013    $0.00

Payable in 2012    $0.00

Payable in 2011    $0.00

Payable in 2010    $0.00

Payable in 2009    $0.00

Payable in 2008   $160,075.00

Payable in 2007   $158,648.00

Payable in 2006   $152,576.00

Payable in 2005   $146,398.00

Payable in 2004   $144,633.00

Payable in 2003   $150,659.00

Payable in 2002   $144,920.00

The value is now zero since government doesn’t pay real estate taxes.  The Town bought the property in 2007.  The documents from the Town of Normal authorizing the purchase say it was purchased in 2004 by Tom and Rhonda Brander.  They obviously paid around $450,000 for the property before selling it to Normal in 2007.  (multiply the above figures by 3)

The property was never on the market according to the Town Council Action Report dated November 1, 2007.  It says the “staff” heard they were planning to sell.  The action report says an appraisal was done, but under the Freedom of Information Act I was told it did not exist.

It appears to me that the relationship between Mark Petersen, the Town of Normal, and the Branders deserves more investigation.

Since no government corruption is ever reported in the media, evidently none exists.

One thought on “Normal Property Tax Assessments

  1. Unbelievable! You can’t make this kind of stuff up! The Normal town folk should be marching to city hall with tar and feathers.

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