What laws affect how the assessor appraises my property?
Washington State law requires assessors to appraise property at 100% of its "true and fair market value" in money according to the "highest and best use" of the property. That means the assessor must first know what similar properties are selling for, what it would cost to replace it, and what the current interest rates are for borrowing the money to buy or build properties like yours. There are three basic approaches to the valuation of real property:
  1. Market or sales approach: comparison of a property with the characteristics of similar properties that have recently been sold.
  2. Cost approach: estimate of the replacement cost of a structure and adjusting that estimate to account for depreciation.
  3. Income approach: analysis of a property's value based on its capacity to generate revenue for the owner.

Show All Answers

1. What laws affect how the assessor appraises my property?
2. What is market value?
3. Can I appeal my new assessed value?
4. Why do we have property taxes?
5. If assessed value increases, do taxes have to increase?
6. If assessed value decrease, do taxes have to decrease?
7. Is it possible to make a "ballpark estimate" of how much the taxes will be on a piece of property that I am thinking about buying, or a structure that I might build?
8. How does Washington State rank in terms of property tax collected per household when compared to other states?
9. What are tax code areas and taxing districts levy limits?
10. What is a taxing district?
11. How do I contact a city, fire district, school district or other taxing district?
12. How can I determine city and subdivision boundaries?
13. When will the assessor update assessments?