Property tax is one of the principal ways that we pay for the many services of local government. Pierce County’s Assessor-Treasurer will collect $1.27 Billion this year for education, public safety, parks, roads, libraries and other valuable community services.
During the past year, citizens in 21 taxing districts around Pierce County (school districts, fire districts, and towns), voted to increase or renew property tax levies. In addition, a new property tax was added in most of the County for Sound Transit. This, coupled with increasing property values, results in an average tax increase Countywide of 5.6 per cent. Four out of five property owners will see some increase in their tax this year, with the remainder seeing a reduction, especially in districts where certain levies have expired.
Tax rates per $1,000 of property value continue to go down again in 2017, as property values rise. These rates vary from under $10 per thousand in Gig Harbor to around $16 in Tacoma, with the average throughout the County being approximately $14 per thousand.
As you will see on your tax statement, your total tax is a combination of all the taxing districts where your property is located, including schools, fire districts, EMS, roads, cities and towns, county, parks, library, port, flood district and transit. Just over one-half of all property taxes are the result of voted levies, with the remainder being regular property taxes, allowed by law to grow at only one percent per year.
Your property tax bill may also contain small assessments that are not taxes, such as conservation district, surface water management and noxious weed control. These are included in your total due and collected in the same way as taxes.
The first half payment is due no later than May 1, 2017 (because April 30 falls on a Sunday), and the second half must be paid by October 31, to avoid interest and penalties. Property taxes on homes with mortgages are typically paid by the bank or mortgage company from an escrow account, in which case the homeowner does not receive a tax bill from the Assessor-Treasurer.
The Assessor-Treasurer’s office is ready to answer your questions and assist you with paying your taxes. You will find lots of information on this website. If you don’t find what you need here, please click on our “live chat” feature or call Customer Service at (253)798-6111.
320,000 value notices have been sent to property owners throughout Pierce County. The average residential value countywide rose 10.7% to $258,427.
The Washington State Legislature has changed the Senior/Disabled property tax exemption program by increasing the maximum annual household income from $35,000 to $40,000. This change is not retroactive, it applies to property taxes due in 2016 and forward only.
You may qualify for property tax relief in 2016, if by December 31, 2015: You are age 61 or older, or you are unable to be gainfully employed because of physical or mental impairment, and you own and occupy a residence or mobile home, and have a gross household income of $40,000 or less.
For more information please stop by our office at the Pierce County Annex, call us at (253) 798-2169, or click on Exemptions and Deferrals using the menu to the left on this website.
NOTE: If you are already enrolled in the exemption program, we have placed you in the correct income category. You will receive either a Renewal or Status Change Notice later in 2016.
February 18, 2016-- There are many reasons your property tax bill can increase. Pierce County Assessor-Treasurer Mike Lonergan helps make sense of your property tax bill, and he explains the increases you can expect in certain areas of the County.
We have mailed Notices of Value to the owners of all property in Pierce County. The postcards state the value of the property as of January 1, 2015, and compare it with the value from the previous year. In general, residential property in Pierce County has gone up an average of 6.6% in the past year, and commercial property has increased 2.25%. This marks the third year of recovery from the sharp drop in property values during 2009 to 2012.
The average home value in Pierce County increased from $217,964 last year to $232,497 this year. Values increased at varying rates depending upon location. For example, residential values in Buckley rose 11.3% while those in DuPont went up only an average of 1.4%. These figures are the result of actual sales of similar properties taking place during 2014, and the annual physical inspection of one-sixth of all properties in the County by our team of appraisers.
If you do not agree that we have placed a true and fair value on your property, you have the right to appeal. On this website, you can see the information we have about your property by clicking on “Property Tax & Value” above, then entering your parcel number or address. If you wish to appeal the value, click on “Appeals” in the menu to the left, for the steps to follow. Appeals must be filed with the Board of Equalization no later than September 4, 2015.
Your property value determines your fair share of taxes to be billed in February of 2016 for many local government services. Your actual tax next year will depend largely on voted taxes in the school, fire and park districts, etc. where your property is located. Therefore, an increase in value does not mean a corresponding increase in your tax bill—it is just one of the factors. If you want to learn more about property values and taxes, click on various topics in the menu to the left of your screen.
Your 2015 Property Tax
Property Tax amounts for 2015 are now posted on this website and statements are being mailed to taxpayers. First half payment are due no later than April 30.
About Monthly Payments
Assessing New Construction
Assessor-Treasurer's office adds one billion dollars of New Construction value to Pierce County tax rolls in 2014.
Property Values Increase
Trends in home values are raising many Pierce County property assessments.
Thanks for the many positive comments about our improved website. We continue to innovate and improve the methods we use to value all Pierce County residential and commercial properties, the ways we communicate with taxpayers, and how we collect property taxes to provide the many services of local government. We have adopted the motto "Better every day", and will apply it to all areas of our office. I'll keep you informed of our progress here from time to time.
In the "Contact Us" area to the right of your screen, you will see a box that says "Have a Question?/Click to chat live." This is our new Live Chat feature, allowing you to communicate online directly with one of our Customer Service representatives during office hours. Yes, you can still call, write, email or visit us, but this new way of getting quick answers is already becoming popular.
Live Chat for Property Tax Questions
News from PCTV--Now you can chat by computer with your Assessor-Treasurer's office if you have a question about your property tax statements.
Valuations Show Property Value Increase
Assessor-Treasurer Mike Lonergan discusses property valuations on the Pierce County News TV show.
To learn more about property valuations, please call us at (253) 798-6111, send us an email, or visit the Property Assessment section of our website.
Appraisal Swearing-In Ceremony
All property appraisers employed by Pierce County have re-affirmed their oath of office. County Assessor-Treasurer Mike Lonergan administered the oath to members of his staff, and presented them with framed certificates.
The Oath reads in part, "I will, to the best of my judgment, skill and ability; truly, faithfully, diligently and impartially perform the duties as an Appraiser, as such duties are prescribed by law, so help me God. "
The appraisers serve on four teams within the Assessor-Treasurer's office: residential, commercial, statistical and appeals. Each of them is Accredited by the Washington State Department of Revenue to evaluate property for tax purposes.
Welcome to the Assessor-Treasurer's Website
As your Pierce County Assessor-Treasurer, I am honored to lead a team of 77 people dedicated to serving you with respect and earning your trust. While almost no one enjoys paying taxes, we all understand that schools, roads, libraries, parks and public safety need our support. Our pledge to you is that we will make every effort to see that you are taxed fairly and correctly, and if we do make a mistake, we’ll fix it.
On behalf of over 75 taxing districts in Pierce County which are served by the Assessor-Treasurer’s office, thank you for making these public services possible by your property tax support. If you have questions or concerns that are not addressed on this website—or an idea to improve our service to you, please contact us.