King County Property Tax Valuation Notice

Did you receive your “Official Property Value Notice” over the weekend? Let’s just say that I’m not surprised to see how much our values have gone up…although, in my opinion, I think the 2018 assessed value of my home is higher than what I could most likely sell it for.

My husband and I actually “successfully” contested the assessed value for 2016 with the county when they valued the home over what it sold for as a foreclosure. Ultimately the reduction to our property taxes were minimal and it took a lot of effort. Even if we had not appealed our taxes, I would have anticipated this jump just based on what homes in the greater Seattle – King County area have been selling for this past year. If you want to appeal your 2018 tax valuation, you must do so within 60 days of the date on the front of the notice which would be October 29, 2018 (our notice is dated 8/30/2018). Visit www.kingcounty.gov/appeals

The exemption for seniors, disabled vets and people with disabilities to have reductions to their property taxes should be updated to reflect current income levels. The current exemption requires that annual incomes need to be $40,000 or less. King County should consider what HUD uses to determine low income to allow reduced taxes. In 2018, $56,800 is considered low income for a 1 person household and $64,200 is low income for a 2 person household in King County.

In addition, would like to see a cap put on how much property taxes can increase per year – especially for those who meet HUD’s low income limit definitions (see image below). Most mortgage programs that have adjustable payments (ARMS aka adjustable rate mortgages) have caps on just how much the payment can adjust up or down. (I say most because home equity lines of credit that are attached to prime generally do not have caps limiting how high they can adjust). Perhaps it’s time for a cap to property taxes so that home owners are not “payment shocked” out of their homes. Significant increases to property taxes do not only impact those who own homes – it impacts people who are renting as well as the increase in payment will eventually be passed to the renter.

In 2017, our property tax assessment went up 27% and the 2018 assessment is up another 11%. That’s 38% in just two years!

You can get a rough idea of how King County has arrived at the new values for your home by clicking here.

 

 

 

 

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