The King County Department of Assessments has begun sending out annual property valuation notices to property owners, via email and the U.S. Postal Service. Notices will continue arriving through early September.
In many areas of the county, property values are up again this year. Higher valuations, however, do not necessarily translate into higher property taxes. Increasing prices for properties when sold, voter approved tax measures, and improvements to properties all may contribute to increased taxes. These will vary by neighborhood and by any given property.
This year, Assessor John Wilson is encouraging property owners to sign up for a new program to receive their annual property valuation notice via email instead of through the USPS. This new electronic valuation notice program will save money for the Department of Assessments, and is environmentally friendly. Check this out at www.kingcounty.gov/assessor and click on the “Go Paperless” window for details. Paperless notifications saves taxpayer dollars in staff time, materials and postage.
Property owners who believe their assessment may be incorrect, can appeal to the Board of Equalization (BOE). This must be done within 60 days of receipt of the 2016 valuation notice. Details are available at the Department of Assessments website www.kingcounty.gov/assessor or the BOE at http://www.kingcounty.gov/independent/board-of-appeals/about.aspx.
State law requires each county assessor to revalue property annually, and to conduct a physical inspection of each property at least once every six years. Property values are determined by certified appraisers who assess property based on comparable sales, various attributes of a particular property, and/or income generated by the property.