Thousands of Baltimore area homeowners opened their mail recently to find a distressing notice: their property tax bills are going to rise -- and they're likely to keep going up in the next few years. But after a red hot housing market during the pandemic, the assessed values of homes are catching up. The government uses assessed values to calculate property taxes. Almost everyone's home in the Baltimore area is worth more now -- a lot more -- and the tax man knows it. He believes an increase in property taxes now is a small price to pay when thinking about the future of the region, especially because property values in other parts of the country are rising faster. If you're concerned about climbing the economic ladder, that's the way most people start to do it,' Walters said. 'Even the greater metro [Baltimore area] has been lagging other metros lately. And that's a concern.' Every year, the agency reviews a third of all properties in Maryland and calculates their value based on a variety of factors, including recent home sales, neighborhood desirability, the size of homes, and more. Every county in metropolitan Baltimore -- Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Carroll, Harford, Howard and Queen Anne's -- saw total assessed values climb between about 15 to 25%. Over the past three years, home prices rose by about 40%. 'How your home equity is enhanced is the first major way you start to climb the economic ladder and build wealth and someday afford retirement.' 'So no, it's not a good thing.'