Rachel D. Siracuse
Ferry County Assessor
Elected to Office, November 2002, 2006 and 2010
Kathy Lust, Deputy Assessor
Amanda Rowton, Deputy Assessor
Jeff Koffel, Chief Appraiser
May 1, 2013
Annual Revaluations Are Coming To Ferry County
All property owners in Ferry County will be receiving a real property Change of Value Notice in late May or early June this year. Ferry County is beginning the state mandated annual revaluation cycle, resulting in Change of Value notices for every parcel. Until this year, the Ferry County Assessor’s Office performed property tax assessments on a cyclical basis. This meant that approximately ¼ of the county was inspected and revalued each year while the remaining ¾ of the county retained their previous values. In 2009, the state legislature passed a law requiring that by 2014, all counties perform revaluations on an annual basis. The Washington Department of Revenue has approved Ferry County to make the switch to an annual revaluation county in 2013. This change will lead to greater equity and uniformity among properties throughout the county.
The new system of valuing property annually will help eliminate the sometimes large increases (or decreases) in assessed value that can occur when properties are revalued only every fourth year. These increases in assessed values can lead to a disproportionate increase in property taxes for the areas affected. This is due to the shift that occurs when only a portion of values in the county are re-appraised to reflect market value while others are paying taxes based on two, three or four year old property values. When assessments are adjusted annually, based on market conditions, there will be better predictability of future tax payments.
Annual revaluation will also allow the Assessor’s Office to react to changes in market conditions more quickly. Currently, State law requires Ferry County reappraise property every four years based on sales of similar properties that occurred prior to the reassessment date. If the market declines several months after that reassessment date, those properties cannot be readjusted until their reappraisal again, four years later. Under the annual revaluation system, the values are adjusted downward in the following year, if the market indicates a downturn. This is especially relevant during our current downward market trend.
Even though property owners will receive a Change of Value Notice each year, it does not necessarily mean they will receive a new assessment every year. If, after a review of the sales in their area, it appears that assessments are in line with recent sales, then no adjustment would be necessary. If assessments warrant an adjustment, based on market activity, property values will be adjusted accordingly. Since this will be done annually, adjustments will be more gradual than what the county has seen in the past. This will lead to better uniformity, predictability and fairness in the property tax system.
Just as a reminder to property owners, once you receive your notice, please look it over carefully and call the Assessor’s office at (509) 775-5225 ext. 2502, if you have any questions. You will have 30 days or until July 1st, whichever is later, in which to work out any issues with the office or file an appeal with the Board of Equalization.
Forms needed when buying current use or forestland
Welcome to the Ferry County Assessor’s office web site. I hope that the information that you find here will help you with your research. If you need more help, please don’t hesitate to contact the office during our public hours.
The primary role of the Assessor’s office is to establish the fair market value for all property in Ferry County for tax purposes. The Assessor is required by law to value property at market value and to assure that all values are equitable, fair and uniform to all property owners in Ferry County.
It is my responsibility as your assessor to insure that all property owners are treated fairly and impartially in accordance with our state laws. It is our sincere desire to serve you in an effective, responsible and courteous manner.
Taxable property is divided into two classes: Real property includes land and all buildings, structures, improvement to the land, and mobile homes. Personal property includes machinery and equipment, fixtures, furniture, and other items that are movable in nature. Household goods and personal effects are exempt from property taxation.
The amount of taxes to be paid is determined not only by your assessed value but by the various taxing districts such as the State of Washington, County and City legislative authorities, fire districts, school districts and other ‘junior’ districts, as well as the voting public in its consideration of special levies.
The assessed value of your property multiplied by the levy rate for the area that your property lies within established the amount of property taxes that you pay each year. This amount can change from year to year based upon changes in your assessed value and changes in the levy rate in your area.
|Estimated Total County Acres||1,410,560||1,410,560||1,410,560|
|Estimated Taxable Acres||259,235||257,603||256,583|
|Acres in Current Use & Forestland||180,357||180,463|
|Parcels in Current Use & Forestland||2,327||2378|
|Taxable Real Property Parcels||9,734||9771|
|Taxable Real Property Value||480,795,085||515,938,240|
|Taxable Personal Property Parcels||380||385|
|Taxable Personal Property Value||16,484,582||17,194,744|
|Taxable State Assessed Companies||40||41|
|Taxable State Assessed Value||25,840,015||19,824,826|
|Senior/Disabled Exemption Participants||318||330|