Washington County Board Of Equalization
197 East Tabernacle
Saint George, Utah 84770
Appealing Your Market Value
- Q. What is the Notice of Property Valuation?
A. The Notice of Property Valuation and Tax Changes is mailed annually to all property owners in Washington County and indicates the current real property market value, estimated taxes, and tax entities’ hearing schedules. (If a tax increase is proposed by a taxing entity, a date and time will be shown.)
This document is extremely important and provides taxpayers with a yearly accounting of their current market value, property classification and instructions for appealing market value to the Board of Equalization.
If you have not received the notice, please contact the Washington County Clerk/Auditor at (435) 634-5712 for a duplicate copy.
- Q. What is the basis of my Property Valuation?
A. All real property in Washington County is appraised by the Assessor’s Office to estimate 100% market value as of January 1st each year. Market value is typically defined as the amount of money a willing buyer would pay to a willing seller. In other words, if you wanted to sell your property what price would you accept?
Foreclosure sales, sales involving special considerations, or sales between relatives are not considered fair market transactions.
- Q. Property owners often ask “Why are my taxes so high?”
A. The tax shown on your Notice of Valuation is a result of many factors; the market value of the property, tax rates set by the taxing entities in the area you live and tax exemptions given to qualified property owners.
Please be aware that the Board of Equalization has no authority to change tax rates.
If your taxes have increased during the past year it may be due to one or more of the following:
- Your valuation may have increased due to an addition, remodel, new construction or the ongoing County equalization program.
- The tax rate for the area you live in may be changing.
- Your property classification may have changed from a primary residence to non-primary residence. (To obtain the necessary forms to change the property classification, click here.)
- Q. Should I go through the appeal process?
A. If you have documentation showing that the market value of your property is lower than the County’s valuation you may have grounds for an appeal.
You may wish to consider the amount of tax dollars to be saved by the appeal process. A fair example would be approximately $10.00 in taxes for every $1,000 in valuation.
- Q. How do I appeal the Market Value of my Property?
A. To file an appeal application, you are required to complete an Application for Review of Market Value for each property being appealed. You must provide your estimate of value and include evidence to support that value. All residential improved properties require a completed Application for Residential Exemption and Homeowner’s Questionnaire.
Insufficient or incomplete information on your application will result in your appeal being dismissed.
- Q. Download forms here:
- Q. What evidence is required?
A. A current appraisal with an effective date within one year prior to January 1, 2016, or a minimum of three (3) recent sales of properties located in or around your neighborhood that are similar to yours in size, age, condition and quality.
A closing statement, if you purchased your property within one year prior to January 1, 2016.
Commercial properties must submit rent rolls, vacancy rates and income and expense statements for each of the three (3) years prior to the current tax year.
All evidence should be based on the tax lien date of January 1, 2016, and must be filed with the appeal application.
- Q. Where do I get the application forms?
A. To expedite the appeal process, please come to the Washington County Board of Equalization office located at 87 N 200 E, Saint George, (August 1st – September 15th from 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.) to complete and submit the information required for your appeal application.
You may print all necessary forms to file an appeal with the Board of Equalization, together with instructions on how to fill them out from this website.
You may also request the forms from the Board of Equalization at (435) 652-5875.
- Q. How long do I have to appeal my valuation?
A. All appeals must be received by September 15, 2016
- Q. Do I have to come to a hearing?
A. No, it is not required. However, you must submit your completed application and evidence to substantiate your estimate of value. Your appeal will be presented to a Board of Equalization hearing officer and a decision will be made based on your submitted evidence.
- Q. How do I schedule a hearing?
A. Once you have completed and returned the appeal application and your evidence to the Board of Equalization, someone will be contacting you to schedule an appointment.
- Q. What can I expect at my hearing?
A. The hearings are conducted in an informal setting. You will be given the opportunity to present your case and answer any questions that may arise during the hearing.
The hearing officer may be a local independent appraiser. An appraiser from the Assessor’s Office will also be present.
- Q. When will I receive a decision by the Board of Equalization?
A. Your appeal will be processed and the results mailed to you by the Washington County Clerk/Auditor. If a change was made to your market value, the tax notice you receive will reflect the corrected taxes based on the new valuation.
- Q. What if I disagree with the decision?
A. If you disagree with the decision reached by the Board of Equalization, you may take your appeal to the State Tax Commission. You must fill out an additional application with the Washington County Clerk/Auditor to initiate a State Appeal. Please refer to your Board of Equalization decision correspondence for instructions.
Additional Property Taxation Information
- Q. General Information
A. Property taxes are one of the primary sources of funds for local governments, counties, school districts, cities, towns, and special agencies such as water and sewer districts. The state and federal government do not receive any revenue from your property tax. Fire and police protection, schools, roads, and senior citizen programs are examples of local services funded by your property taxes.
- Q. Market vs. Taxable Value
A. Property taxes are based upon the market value of your property on January 1st of the current year. Market value is determined by your County Assessor. As the market value of your property increases or decreases, your property tax may also increase or decrease.
Market Value: is the price your property would sell for if it were offered for a reasonable amount of time. This assumes that both the buyer and seller are unrelated, well-informed and under no pressure to buy or sell the property.
Taxable Value: is the value used to calculate taxes due on your property. A primary residence receives a 45% reduction from market value. Each property owner may only have one primary residence. For most other classes of property the taxable value is the same as the market value.
- Q. Tax Rates
A. Tax rates are set by the various political entities with the legal power to levy taxes. These governmental entities include counties, school districts, cities and towns and special taxing districts, such as water and sewer districts and cemetery districts.
- Q. “Notice of Property Valuation and Tax Changes”
A. Utah State law requires that before taxes may be increased, your county must give notice to you of proposed changes. Two types of changes may take place: (1) the appraised market value of your property on January 1st, and (2) the proposed taxes that property owners will pay. The law requires that notification be given in advance of the proposed tax increase and of the time and location of the budget meetings at which public input will be received. This is a notice of property valuation and tax change and not a tax bill. DO NOT PAY ANY AMOUNT SHOWN ON THIS NOTICE.
- Q. Current and Proposed Property Taxes
A. Tax Last Year: This is the amount of tax that you were charged last year. The actual tax that you paid may have been less if you received a tax credit based upon a veteran’s exemption, blind exemption, indigent abatement, or circuit breaker. Taxes on personal property, motor vehicles or special assessments are not included in these amounts.
This Year’s Tax if No Budget Change: This is the amount of tax you will be charged if property tax revenues for each taxing entity are not increased. These amounts do not reflect any reduction for a veteran’s exemption, blind exemption, indigent abatement, or circuit breaker for which you may be eligible, or taxes on personal property, motor vehicles, or special assessments.
This Year’s Tax if Proposed Budget is Passed: This is the tax you will be charged if the property tax revenues requested by each entity are adopted. These amounts do not reflect any reduction for a veteran’s exemption, blind exemption, indigent abatement, or circuit breaker for which you may be eligible, or taxes on personal property, motor vehicles, or special assessments. You are encouraged to participate in the public meetings where these budgets are discussed. The locations and times for these budget meetings are listed on this notice.
- Q. Appeals
A. The Notice of Property Valuation and Tax Changes shows the value placed on your property by the County Assessor. If you believe the value of your property is incorrect, contact your County Board of Equalization (the County Commissioners or their representatives) within 45 days of the mailing of this notice. Your appeal must address the issue of market value, not the rate of tax.
Evidence supporting your estimation of the market value must be included in the appeal. If you do not agree with the Board of Equalization decision, you may appeal to the State Tax Commission. Appeals to the Tax Commission must be filed with your County Auditor within 30 days after the final action of the County Board of Equalization.
- Q. Tax Relief
A. There are tax relief programs in place for the following classifications of property owners. To obtain information or to see if you qualify, please contact the County Auditor’s Office. Applications are due by September 1st.
- Veteran’s Exemption (available to veterans, disabled as a result of their service, or their unmarried surviving spouse and orphans)
- Blind Exemption (available to the visually impaired and their surviving spouses and orphans)
- Low Income Abatement (must be at least 65 years of age, or under age 65 and disabled or under extreme hardship)
- Circuit Breaker (available to those over the age of 66 or a widow or widower and based on an annual income limitation)
- Q. Taxes Due
A. Taxes become delinquent if they are not paid by November 30th of each year. A $10.00 or 2% penalty per parcel, whichever is greater, is assessed if the payment is late. If taxes remain unpaid on January 16th of the following year, interest on the unpaid amount begins to accrue effective January 1st of that year.
For more information, contact the departments below:
- Q. County Assessor
A. (435) 634-5703
87 N 200 E
Saint George, UT 84770
- Property Values
- Residential Exemption Forms
- Appraisal Information
- Valuation Appeals
- Q. County Clerk/Auditor
A. (435) 634-5712
197 E Tabernacle
Saint George, UT 84770
- Tax relief programs
- Veteran’s Exemption
- Blind exemption
- Circuit Breaker/Widow
- Indigent Abatement
- Tax Rates
- Duplicate Copies of Notice of Valuation and Tax Changes
- Tax relief programs
- Q. County Recorder
A. (435) 634-5709
87 N 200 E
Saint George, UT 84770
- Property Ownership
- Legal Descriptions
- Plat/County Maps
- Acreage Questions
- Mailing Address Changes
- Q. County Treasurer
A. (435) 634-5711
197 E Tabernacle
Saint George, UT 84770
- Delinquent Taxes
- Tax Payments