TERMS YOU SHOULD KNOW
The value upon which your taxes are calculated. This is normally the base year value of the property established in accordance with Proposition 13 plus the annual inflation factor, or current market value, whichever is lower.
The base year value for property in California is 1975 or the year in which property has transferred or been newly constructed. The Assessor determines the full cash value of property on its base year date. This base year value will be factored by an inflationary factor not to exceed 2 percent each year until the property is transferred at which time a new base year is established. A new base year is also established for new construction.
FULL CASH VALUE:
Full Cash Value or Fair Market Value means the amount of cash or its equivalent which property would bring if exposed for sale in the open market under conditions of which neither buyer nor seller take advantage of the other.
The official list of all assessable property in the County as of the lien date.
The "moment" of valuation for all property. The assessed value of the property as of 12:01 a.m. on January 1 governs the tax status for the fiscal year beginning the following July 1.
Land and improvements.
All buildings, structures, fixtures, pools, fences, etc., secured to the land, including taxable mobile homes and taxable trees and vines.
All other property subject to the general property tax but not considered land or improvements (such as boats, aircraft and business personal property).
Property on which the property taxes are a lien against real estate.
Property on which the property taxes are not a lien against real estate (office furniture, machinery, equipment, boats, airplanes, etc.) NOTE: Business inventory is now exempt from taxation.
DIRECT CHARGES (AKA SPECIAL ASSESSMENTS):
Direct charges are non-value-related amounts levied on a tax bill by various local special districts, rather than the Assessor. Direct charges include a variety of items such as voter-approved special taxes (including Mello-Roos Community Facilities Districts), qualified special taxes, benefit/special assessments (including 1915 Improvement Districts), charges for services/fees, and delinquent water/sewer bills.