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You May be Eligible for a Temporary Reduction in the Assessed Value of Your Property

Information on Decline in Value Reassessments:

It has been widely reported that the property values of single-family homes and condominiums throughout most of the State have been declining. While the declines in Los Angeles County have not been as dramatic as those in other parts of the State, property values have dropped in most areas of Los Angeles County.

How does this impact your property taxes?

In 1978, California voters passed Proposition 8, a constitutional amendment that allows a temporary reduction in assessed value when a property suffers a “decline-in-value.” A decline-in-value occurs when the current market value of your property is less than the assessed value as of January 1. The assessed value is the value shown on your most recent property tax bill.

Typically, an application is required to initiate a review of your property’s value by the Assessor. However, in 2008 the Los Angeles County Assessor’s Office did a proactive review of those single-family homes and condominiums that were purchased between July 1, 2004 and June 30, 2007. 318,000 properties were reviewed, resulting in lower assessments on 128,000 homes and condos. The average reduction in assessed value was about $73,000, amounting to an average property tax savings of $750. With the market still declining, the LA County Assessor will again initiate a review in 2009. The number of properties in this review may approach 500,000. They will look at sales of comparable properties that sold near the lien date, January 1, 2009. If the market value is less than the assessed value as of January 1, 2009, the assessed value will be reduced accordingly. According to the LA County Assessor, an application will not be necessary.

The Assessor’s office will complete this review by June, 2009 and notify in writing all those property owners whose property was included in the review. Decline-In-Value applications are accepted from January 1, 2009 through December 31, 2009; however, if you purchased a house or condo in 2002 or later, the Assessor’s office is urging people to wait to submit their application until July when results of the proactive review are known.

If you own property other than a single family residence or condo, a Decline-In-Value application will be required for a review by the Assessor’s Office. An application is recommended if you believe the assessed value of the property shown on the 2008-09 tax bill is more than the fair market value as of January 1, 2009.

Alert: If you have received a solicitation from a private company seeking to lower the assessed value of your property, Click here for more information.

Click here for a link to the Decline-in-Value Reassessment Application (Prop 8).

Click here for more information about temporary reduction in the assessed value of your property.
Source: LA County Tax Assessor

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