It’s that time of year again to pay your property taxes; providing your taxes are not impounded in your mortgage payment. Is there a way to pay less property tax? The answer is maybe.
First off, in case you’re in a hurry, here’s how and where to pay your Shasta County property taxes in order to avoid a penalty:
The remaining one-half of the taxes on all real property and personal property secured by real property are due by February 1, 2009, and will be delinquent on April 10, 2008.
Make your check payable to: Shasta County Tax Collector
Shasta County Tax Collector
P.O. Box 991830
Redding CA 96099-1830
Regarding the payment due date: Placing the envelope in the post office box does not guarantee that the mail will be processed the same day/evening. State law requires that a payment be treated as if it had been received on the date shown by the post office cancellation mark on the envelope. Only U.S. Federal Government postmarks will be accepted. To avoid penalties, ask to have the envelope hand canceled by the post office. Metered mail is not accepted as a valid cancellation. Contact the Shasta County Tax assessor at 530-225-3600 for specific questions.
You can also pay your property taxes online with a virtual check. Visit the Shasta County Tax Collector Web Site https://www.co.shasta.ca.us/html/TC/Virtual_Check_Intro.htm
Here’s how you may be able to reduce your property tax bill:
When the economy is faltering it’s time to scrutinize your property tax bill. As I’m sure you already know, real property values in Shasta County have dropped severely in the past several years. The Shasta County property tax rate is generally 1.1% of the assessed value. Therefore, if the assessed value of your property is high relative to comparable properties, you could be over paying your property taxes.
Step one: You can verify the value of your property yourself and you don’t have to pay anyone or any company. Be aware, there are many scams where companies offer to reduce your property tax for a fee. I recommend you save your money for all the other taxes you must pay.
Step Two: Make sure you’re not over paying you property tax by finding out the value the Assessor is using for your property. This is also a good time to check for errors in the description of your property. Errors such as: The reported square footage of the dwelling, bedroom and bath count and lot size all can affect the value of your property.
Step Three: Verify the Assessor’s valuation by determining the fair market value of your property. Any competent real estate broker should be able to help you with steps one and two. Should you need assistance, please email or call as I will provide you with an Assessor’s print-out and assist you with an expert property valuation at no cost to you.
Step Four: If you think the assessed valuation of your property is “high”, I recommend you contact the Assessor’s office at 225-3600 and request an informal review of your property. You may also wish to file a Request For Review form with Shasta County Assessor-Recorder. You can download the form by clicking on the previous hyperlink.
Once you have completed the form mail to:
SHASTA COUNTY ASSESSOR-RECORDER
1450 COURT STREET, SUITE 208-A
REDDING CA 96001-1667
The Request For Review Form is generally filed before filing an official Appeals Application. Like most things in life, it’s best to start out with a gentle request first. It’s my opinion you are better to try and fail than to never try at all.
An important side note: The Tax Collector collects property taxes that fund the activities of local government of the county including the school system. The Tax Collector does not determine how much to collect. The County Assessor determines the value of a parcel and gives the value information to the County Auditor-Controller, who applies the tax rates and special assessments to the tax bill. The Auditor-Controller then charges the Tax Collector with the collection of the tax bill.
You may also wish to review the Shasta County’s Assesment Appeal Handout. The purpose of this handout or pamphlet is to acquaint you with the process of appealing your assessment to the Assessment Appeals Board (AAB), including the statutory requirements for filing an appeal and presenting a case before the Board. The pamphlet will help you understand how the system works and what you can do to make the most use of it.
Was this information helpful? I’d like to hear your thoughts, please comment below. Also, be sure to let me know if I can help you in any way or if I left out any important information.