The Local Government Services Division maintains a web page that gives contact information and taxation procedures for that county. The County Property Tax Facts website provides more information about which tax official to contact with your property tax questions.
The county tax commissioner's office is the best source of information for questions about:
paying your tax bill
filing for homestead exemptions (or the tax assessor in some counties)
receiving property tax returns (or the tax assessors in some counties)
registration of your motor vehicle
purchasing tax liens
collecting recording intangible tax (in most counties the Clerk of Superior Court collects this tax)
The county tax assessor's office is the best source of information for questions about:
filing an appeal of your property tax assessment
the appraised value on your home (see question below about property values on the web)
filing homestead exemptions (or the tax commissioner in some counties)
receiving property tax returns (or the tax commissioner in some counties)
maintaining property tax records and maps for the county
If the tax commissioner or tax assessor has a website, then you will find a link to their website on our County Property Tax Facts website that contains information on which tax official to contact with your property tax questions.
The basic formula to figure the tax on a home using the State's standard $2,000 homestead exemption is:
[(assessed value) - $2,000] * millage rate = tax due
Example: Fair market value means "the amount a knowledgeable buyer would pay for the property and a willing seller would accept for the property at an arm's length, bona fide sale." Assessed value is 40% of the fair market value. If a person that owned a home with a fair market value of $100,000 in an unincorporated area of a county where the millage rate was 25.00 mills, that person's property tax would be $950.00--[(100,000 * 40%) - $2,000] * .02500 = $950.00. Multiply $100,000 by 40% which is equal to the assessed value of $40,000 and subtract the homestead exemption of $2,000 from the assessed value. Then multiply $38,000 by the millage rate of .02500 which is equal to $950.00.
The county board of tax assessors must send an annual assessment notice which gives the taxpayer information on filing an appeal on real property (such as land and buildings affixed to the land). If the county board of tax assessors disagrees with the taxpayer’s return on personal property (such as airplanes, boats or business equipment and inventory), the board must send an assessment notice which gives the taxpayer information on filing an appeal.
Upon receipt of this Assessment Notice, the property owner desiring to appeal the assessment may do so within 45 days of the date the Assessment Notice was mailed. The taxpayer’s appeal may be based on taxability, value, uniformity, and/or the denial of an exemption. The written appeal is filed initially with the Board of Tax Assessors. The state of Georgia provides a uniform appeal form for use by property owners. In that initial written dispute, the property owner must declare their chosen method of appeal.
The taxpayer must select one of the three options below when filing an appeal:
1. Appeal to the County Board of Equalization
2. Appeal to a Hearing Officer
3. Appeal to an Arbitrator
If the county board of tax assessors has adopted a written policy consenting to electronic service, the taxpayer may email an appeal to the board of assessors.
The Department of Revenue may not over-ride the board of assessors, board of equalization, hearing officer, arbitrator or Superior Court regarding individual appraisals and assessments. The Local Government Services Division of the Georgia Department of Revenue is charged with general supervision of ad valorem tax administration across the state including; annual approval of tax digests; the training and certification of tax officials; and regularly scheduled audits of each of the 159 county boards of assessors.
The State offers homestead exemptions to persons that own and occupy their home as a primary residence. Many counties offer homestead exemptions that are more beneficial to the taxpayer than the exemptions offered by the State. Homestead exemptions are filed with the county tax commissioner or the county tax assessor's office.
Property taxes are normally due December 20 in most counties, but some counties may have a different due date. Taxpayers have 60 days from the date of billing to pay their property taxes.
The county tax commissioner is responsible for collecting property taxes for the county, school and state. For questions about billing you should contact the county tax commissioner. For questions about the valuation on your property you should contact the county board of tax assessors.
If you owned property on January 1, you are responsible for the ad valorem tax for the entire year even if you sell the property on January 2. Georgia law does not allow a refund for partial year residents.
In most counties you must go to the county board of tax assessor's office to look up property values. Not every county has the resources to publish property records online. But for those that do, we have a list of counties with property records online - these are the ones that we are aware of. If your county is not on this list, you should contact the county board of tax assessor's office to find out if your county will be offering this service in the near future.
Under Georgia law, all property is to be returned and assessed at fair market value every year (O.C.G.A. 48-5-6). Counties are required to establish a value as of January 1 of each year that meets the definition of fair market value' pursuant to O.C.G.A. 48-5-2. There is not a state mandated revaluation schedule, rather the counties annually review the values on the digest compared to sales data and if property values are determined to be either too low or too high then values are updated. The frequency of property updates can vary from county to county since some counties are experiencing tremendous growth and the real estate market in other counties is more static.
The board of assessor’s responsibility includes annually assessing property at fair market value as of January 1. The purpose of a revaluation is not to increase county revenue but to ensure equity and uniformity of assessment. more...
It is the duty of the county board of tax assessors to investigate diligently and to inquire into the property owned in the county for the purpose of ascertaining what real and personal property is subject to taxation and to require the proper return of the property for taxation. The board of assessors must see that ALL taxable property within the county is assessed at its fair market value AND that fair market values as between the individual taxpayers are fairly and justly equalized so that each taxpayer shall pay as nearly as possible only such taxpayer's proportionate share of taxes. more...
The Tax Digest Consolidated Summary (also known as consolidation sheets) depicts the assessed totals of all property listed on a Georgia county's tax digest separated by tax district. The assessed total is 40% of the fair market value of the property. These summaries also show how much tax is levied in the tax district and the millage rate for each tax district.
Tax liens are filed in the county clerk's office on the general execution docket.
For state tax liens: You should contact the Compliance Division or one of the Revenue Regional offices in the State about state tax executions or liens on property. Another way is to call the telephone number listed in one of the notices which are sent to taxpayers by the Department before a lien issues. If the lien was issued by the Department of Labor then you will need to contact that Department.
For county tax liens: If the lien was issued by your county tax commissioner then you will need to contact that office.
A composite conversion factor is applied to the original cost new of personal property to arrive at the basic cost approach value. For Group I (assets that have a typical economic life between five and seven years): Y1-.87, Y2-.74, Y3-.58, Y4-.43, Y5-.32, Y6-.26, Y7-.21. Thereafter the residual composite conversion factor shall be .20. For Group II (assets that have a typical economic life between eight and twelve years): Y1-.92, Y2-.85, Y3-.78, Y4-.70, Y5-.63, Y6-.54, Y7-.44, Y8-.34, Y9-.28, Y10-.25, Y11-.25. Thereafter the residual composite conversion factor shall be .20. For Group III (assets that have a typical economic life of thirteen years or more): Y1-.95, Y2-.91, Y3-.87, Y4-.82, Y5-.79, Y6-.75, Y7-.70, Y8-.63, Y9-.57, Y10-.52, Y11-.47, Y12-.41, Y13-.35, Y14-.31, Y15-.29, Y16-.28. Thereafter the residual composite conversion factor shall be .20. For Group IV (assets that have a typical economic life of four years or less): Y1-.67, Y2-.54, Y3-.31. Thereafter the residual composite conversion factor shall be .10. For additional information see Rule 560-11-10-.08 Personal Property Appraisal.
It is normal for leasing companies to include in their lease contracts a provision for the lessee to pay all applicable taxes. However, this does not supersede the requirement in Georgia law for the owner of the property to return and pay taxes on property. So, unless the property is owned by a public entity it is taxable. While a public entity may be exempt from taxation, the owner of the property is not. If a public entity has contractually obligated itself, via a lease agreement, to reimburse the owner of the property for any and all taxes this does not change the taxable status of the property.