Property Taxes Frequently Asked Questions....
What do I do when I buy property?
1. Record your deed in Probate Court.
2. Assess the property into your name at the Revenue Commissioner's Office. This is necessary so we can get your correct information, such as your current mailing and telephone number.
3. Claim any exemption such as homestead exemption or current use status if you are using your land for agricultural purposes.
4. Complete the above steps before December 31 for property purchased before October 1st, in order for the property to transfer into your name the following year.
5. When you purchase property, the tax notice will not be in your name for the current tax year. The State of Alabama requires the tax notice to remain in the name that was on record on October 1st of the previous year along with any exemptions that may or may not have been granted to the previous owner.
6. When paying property taxes, it is your responsibility to know what you own and to make sure you are paying taxes on all of your property. These records are available online for your convenience or you may come in and ask for your assessment sheets.
7. It is your responsibility to report any changes to our office. This includes mailing address changes, if you change the use of your property, or if you remove or add any improvements to your property.
What are the Classifcation's of Property?
In Alabama property is classified as:
Class I Utility
Class II All other property
Class III Agricultural, Timber, Single family owner occupied
|Class I Utility||30%|
|Class II All other property||20%|
|Class III Agricultural, Timber, Single family owner occupied||10%|
Multiply the appraised value of property by the proper classification to calculate assessed value. Taxes are based on assessed value less exemptions which you qualify for.
What is a Homestead Exemption and how do I apply for it?
A homestead exemption is a reduced tax a property owner may be entitled to if he or she owns a single-family residence and occupies it on the first day of the tax year for which they are applying. There are four types of homestead exemption.
1 . Regular Homestead Exemption (H1) is available to those who own and occupy single family residences and use this property for no other purpose. The amount of this exemption is $4,000 assessed value for state and $3,000 for county.
2. Exemption 2 (H2) is for persons who are over age 65 with adjusted gross income (AGI) of $12,000 or less on state income tax return. This exemption is for total state taxes and up to $5,000 of county.
3. Exemption 3 (H3) is for persons who are totally disabled or over age 65 and taxable income (TI) less than $12,000.00 on federal tax return. This exempts all property taxes.
4. Exemption 4 (H4) is for persons over age 65, regardless of income. This exemption is for total state taxes and up to $3,000.00 assessed value for county. You will need proof of age and taxable income. Exemptions should be applied for before December 31 each year.
HOW TO APPLY
To apply for the over 65 exemption, you must bring in a copy of your driver's license or a copy of your birth certificate. You must also bring in a copy of your most recent Federal Income tax return, so we can sign you for the correct exemption. Please call us at (256) 760-5785, if you have questions about which tax return to bring in.
To qualify for the Disability Exemption, you must be Retired due to Disability. You must bring in your awards letter from Social Security or if you are drawing any pension or annuity from the armed forces or a company or a government agency because you are permanently and totally disabled, you must bring in that paperwork. If you are disabled through the Veterans Administration, your rating has to be 100% to qualify for this exemption.
What do I do if I add or remove improvements?
The law requires that the owner, or their agent, must come in or notify the Revenue Commissioner's Office no later than December 31st to sign a new assessment reporting any improvements made to the property on or before October 1st of that year.
Should I assess my Manufactured Home?
A property owner who owns a manufactured home, not rented or leased, is required by law to assess it in the Revenue Commission office. The law requires a bill of sale, title (20 years old or newer) and proof that sales tax has been paid.
What is the timetable for collecting taxes?
Taxes are collected on the following schedule for the year that ended on September 30th:
|October 1||Tax Due|
|January 1||Tax Delinquent|
|April||Advertised for Sale|
What are the methods of payment to pay my taxes?
1. Taxes are due every year October 1 and are delinquent after the 31st of December.
2. Payments are made as follows:
- In person. Come to the Revenue Commissioner's Office and make payment by cash, check, money order or debit/credit card.
- By mail. Payments may be paid by mail.
- Online. Search and pay online at www.PayYourPropertyTax.com
- Ask your mortgage company to pay your bill.
3. If you purchased property during the year, make sure the taxes are paid. The bill will usually be in the previous owner's name since taxes are assessed for the previous year. You are responsible for taxes on property you own, regardless of how the tax bill may be listed.