Market value vs. property tax
Market value equals the price that a property would command under competitive, open-market conditions, at the time the property is assessed. The assessor’s office determines property value, but not the property tax. Property tax is determined through a separate property tax process.
There’s a one-year delay between the time your property is valued and classified and the property tax you owe based on that value. The property tax you pay this year is based on your property’s valuation and classification as of January 2 last year. The valuation notice you receive in the spring is based on the valuation and classification as of January 2 this year, and forms the basis of the property tax you will owe next year (manufactured homes are assessed and taxed in the same year).
Factors affecting market value
Changes to the property
The appraiser views the property about every fifth year, and takes into account factors such as new construction, alterations or improvements. The appraiser documents characteristics of the property that affect market value like size, age, quality, basement finish and extra features like fireplaces and extra baths.
Sales of similar properties
Sales information about properties with characteristics similar to yours is one factor used to update your market value.
The same home would sell for a different price in a different location. Land values vary within the county.
County and local assessors are required by the State Board of Equalization to meet standards for their overall assessment.
Property owners can appeal their valuation (see "appealing your assessment" drawer above).
County vs. local assessment
In several municipalities, the assessment is done by the local property assessor, rather than the county. If you live in one of these communities, your local property assessor will have information about your property value.