One of the parts of home ownership is property taxes. Here you will find information on property taxes assessed in Napa County and Sonoma County. To make sure you will be paying the proper amount of property taxes, you should not only know how they are assessed, as well as what happens if your payments are delinquent.
Property Tax Assessment
Property taxes in Napa County and Sonoma County are assessed by a process involving three different departments of the county. They include:
- County Tax Assessor
- County Auditor / Controller
- County Treasurer / Tax Collector
To get your property taxes properly assessed, first the County Assessor decides on the assessed value of your property. He or she does this by determining the cash or market value at the time you purchased your new/current home. This value increases 2% or less per year, until the property is sold again, or any new construction is completed. The County Assessor will then have to reassess the property.
After the value of your property has been assessed, the County Auditor/Controller works to determine the appropriate tax rates to your property. These rates are decided by the county government, and include:
- General Tax Levy
- Locally Voted Special Taxes
- City or District Direct Assessments
The County Auditor / Controller then applies the tax rates, and totals the final tax amount. After that, the County Tax Collector prepares the bills for your property taxes, distributes the bills, and handles collections.
What Effects Your Property Taxes
In Sonoma County and Napa County, there are many things that affect your property taxes. Whether you have just moved to your home, or are simply adding to your home, these changes will affect your tax rate. Some other factors include:
- Moving to a different home
- Substantial construction work on your home
- Buying more land in conjunction to what you already own
- Owning a piece of property for a short amount of time
The General Tax Levy is determined for your property in agreement with current state laws. This is limited to $1 per $100 of the assessed value of your property. Additionally, special taxes and district assessments taxes may be passed by vote in your county.
Delinquent Property Taxes
In Sonoma County and Napa County, if your property taxes are delinquent, there can be very serious consequences. If you fail to pay your property taxes by the time the collection date arrives, you will be penalized with fines equal to 10% of the total due. There are also numerous other fees that can accrue, especially if your delinquent property taxes become defaulted. After five years of unpaid defaulted property taxes, your property becomes subject to Power of Sale and will be sold at public auction.
Sonoma County Tax Department Contact Information
Napa County Tax Department Contact Information
Napa County Treasurer / Tax Collector
The Stornetta Team is dedicated to helping you figure out your taxes, and is here to answer any and all of your questions. Please call us at (707) 815-8749 for more assistance.