All About Your Property Taxes

Frequently Asked Questions

Image of Q (Question)What are the secured property tax delinquent dates?  [ Top]

Image of A (Answer)First Installment - December 10th
Second Installment - April 10th

Property taxes are due in two installments. The first installment is due November 1st and becomes delinquent at 5 p.m. on December 10th. The second installment is due February 1st and becomes delinquent at 5 p.m. on April 10th.

 

Image of Q (Question) What if the delinquent date falls on a weekend or legal holiday?   [ Top

Image of A (Answer)When the delinquent date falls on a Saturday, Sunday, or legal holiday, the time of delinquency is 5 p.m. on the next business day.

 

Image of Q (Question) What if it’s the delinquent date, but I can’t physically appear in the Tax Collector’s Office before 5 p.m?   [ Top]

Image of A (Answer)The tax payment may be postmarked until 12:00 midnight and be treated as timely mailed. The Tax Collector’s Office recommends walking the payment envelope into the most convenient post office and having the postal clerk date stamp the envelope in your presence. This will assure you of timely mailing.

 

Image of Q (Question)May I use an independent delivery service to mail my tax payment?   [ Top]

Image of A (Answer)The law now allows taxpayers to send their tax payments utilizing an approved independent delivery service, if deposit for shipment is made on or before the delinquent date, if it is properly addressed with the required fee prepaid and the delivery is no later than 5:00 p.m. on the next business day after the delinquent date. If all of these conditions are met, the payment will be accepted as shipped timely. Approved independent delivery services are Airborne Express, DHL Worldwide Express, Federal Express, and United Parcel Service.

 

Image of Q (Question) May I pay both installments when the first installment is due?   [ Top]

Image of A (Answer)Yes.

 

Image of Q (Question) Do I have to write one check for each installment?   [ Top]

Image of A (Answer)No. You may write one check for both installments.

 

Image of Q (Question) Do I need the tax bill or installment stub(s) to accompany my payment?   [ Top]

Image of A (Answer)No. If you write your parcel number on your check, this tells the Tax Collector’s Office how to apply your payment.

 

Image of Q (Question) Who is responsible for paying my property taxes?   [ Top]

Image of A (Answer)It is the property owner’s responsibility to obtain and pay the property tax bill.

 

Image of Q (Question) What if I pay my property taxes to my lender?   [ Top]

Image of A (Answer)It is still the property owner’s responsibility to be sure all taxes are paid. The Tax Collector’s Office is not responsible for payment or nonpayment by your mortgage company. Problems with your mortgage company or bank impound account must be resolved by you. If your taxes are paid through an impound account and your lender requests your annual tax bill, you will be mailed an informational copy of the bill each year.

 

Image of Q (Question) What if I don’t receive my annual tax bill by November 10th?   [ Top]

Image of A (Answer)Call the Tax Collector’s Office in Placerville at (530) 621-5800, (530) 573-7955 x5800 for taxpayers in South Lake Tahoe, and (916) 358-3555 x5800 for taxpayers in El Dorado Hills. If you do not receive a tax bill by November 10th, it is your responsibility to contact the Tax Collector’s Office for the amount to pay. By law, penalties cannot be waived because of failure to receive a tax bill.

 

Image of Q (Question)Who determines the amount of my property taxes?   [ Top]

Image of A (Answer)The County Assessor first determines the value of your property. The County Auditor-Controller applies the general property tax rate of 1% and any bond rates to the value of your property. These computed amounts, plus any direct charges, become the total property taxes. The Tax Collector does not determine the amount of your property taxes.

 

Image of Q (Question) Why are 2nd installment delinquencies highest among new property owners?   [ Top]

Image of A (Answer)1) Not knowing the property tax delinquent dates.
2) Misunderstanding who is to pay the taxes – the property owner or the lender.
3) Not reading or asking about the title report or escrow papers as they pertain to the property taxes. Many new owners do not contact the Tax Collector’s Office to determine what taxes are due after escrow closes.
4) Not asking about taxes until billed. Non-receipt of a tax bill does not relieve the imposition of penalties after the delinquent date.

Read your title report and escrow papers carefully to determine which taxes (if any) were paid.

 

Image of Q (Question)Who provides the address on the tax roll?   [ Top]

Image of A (Answer)The address is placed on the tax roll according to your instructions. You provide the address when you record your deed and fill out a preliminary change of ownership form, or when you request the Assessor to change your address. The Tax Collector mails the bill to the address on the tax roll.

 

Image of Q (Question) How do I change the address where my tax bills are mailed?   [ Top]

Image of A (Answer)Advise the Assessor’s Office, in writing, of your new address and mail it to 360 Fair Lane, Placerville, CA 95667. Do not use the address of your lender, accountant or bill paying service. It is very important to notify the Assessor’s Office any time you change your mailing address. The Assessor’s phone number is (530) 621-5719.

 

Image of Q (Question) Why is someone else’s name on my tax bill?   [ Top]

Image of A (Answer)If you were not the owner of record on January 1, the lien date, the prior owner’s name will appear along with yours on the bill. Questions regarding the name and address should be directed to the Assessor’s Office.

 

Image of Q (Question) How do I apply for a homeowner’s exemption?   [ Top]

Image of A (Answer)Simply contact the Assessor’s Office at (530) 621-5719.

 

Image of Q (Question) Are the annual tax bills the only secured property tax bills?   [ Top]

Image of A (Answer)No. There are annual secured tax bills and supplemental tax bills. Senate Bill 813, passed by the State Legislature in July 1983, requires the immediate reassessment of property whenever a change in ownership or completion of construction occurs.

 

Image of Q (Question) How do supplemental property taxes affect me?   [ Top]

Image of A (Answer)If you don’t buy new property or undertake new construction, the supplemental tax will not affect you. But if you purchase property or complete new construction, the Assessor will reappraise the property and send you a notice of supplemental assessment. The supplemental bill, or refund, will follow.

 

Image of Q (Question) Are supplemental bills sent to my lender for payment?   [ Top]

Image of A (Answer)No. Supplemental bills are not sent to your lender. These bills are in addition to your annual property tax bills and are mailed directly to you. It is your responsibility to contact your lender to decide who will pay the supplemental tax bill.

 

Image of Q (Question) When do supplemental tax bills become delinquent?   [ Top]

Image of A (Answer)The delinquent dates vary throughout the year. Examine your supplemental tax bill(s) to determine the last day to pay without penalty.
A reminder: The supplemental tax bill is in addition to the regular annual tax bill.

 

Image of Q (Question) Will my supplemental taxes be prorated in escrow?   [ Top]

Image of A (Answer)Unlike your annual taxes, supplemental taxes are not necessarily prorated in escrow.

 

Image of Q (Question) I received a supplemental tax bill, but I no longer own the property. Do I still have to pay it?   [ Top]

Image of A (Answer)YES. You are paying taxes on the increased value, prorated for the time you owned the property.

 

Image of Q (Question) Why am I getting two supplemental tax bills?   [ Top]

Image of A (Answer)If the change of ownership occurs or the new construction is completed between January 1 and May 31, then two supplemental tax bills are issued, one for the fiscal year when the change occurred and the other for the following fiscal year.

 

Image of Q (Question) What is the cost if I don’t pay my taxes by the delinquent dates?   [ Top]

Image of A (Answer)Delinquent property tax installments are subject to a 10% penalty. In addition, delinquent second installments are subject to a $10.00 cost. Taxes which remain unpaid at the end of the fiscal year (June 30) are also subject to a 11/2% per month penalty and a $15.00 redemption fee.

Image of Q (Question) May I pay using my bank's on-line bill pay service?   [ Top]

Image of A (Answer) It is not recommended that taxpayers use a bank's on-line bill pay system. However, if a bank's on-line system is used, taxpayers are encouraged to set the authorized paymant date at least 10 days prior to the delinquency date as most envelopes with payments sent by banks or their agents are not postmarked by the United State Postal Service. Consequently, there is no proof of mailing date.
If for any reason the bank places a date on the check that is past the delinquency date, the payment will be considered late and a penalty will be incurred.