Paying Too Much For Home Taxes

Paying Too Much For Home Taxes

South Carolina Property Tax Information

Real Property - All land and the buildings, structures or improvements on that land. Personal Property - All things other than real estate which have value such as cars, trucks, boats, motorcycles and airplanes, and items used in a business such as furniture, fixtures and equipment. Fair Market Value - The amount for which property can reasonably be expected to sell on the open market with a willing buyer and a willing seller. Assessment Ratio - The percentage of your property=s value which is subject to taxation. For example, the assessment ratio of residential property is 4%. Multiply your home=s fair market value by the assessment ratio of 4% to determine assessed value. Assessed Value - An appraisal or fair market value of real or personal property multiplied by the appropriate corresponding ratio equals the assessment or assessed value. Assessed value times the millage rate equals the amount of property tax due. The property tax is determined by multiplying the fair market value by the assessment ratio by the millage rate.For example, the tax on your home is determined in this way: $50,000 Fair market value of homex 4% Assessment ratio= 2,000 Assessed valuex .250 Millage rate (250 mills)______________________________= $500 Taxes due The South Carolina Constitution provides for the following ratios to be applied to the market or use value of property to arrive at the assessed value: Your home (legal residence) 4%Second home (or any residential property where you do not live) 6%Agricultural real property (privately owned) 4%Agricultural real property (corporate owned) 6%Commercial real property 6%Manufacturing real and personal property 10.5%Utility real and personal property 10.5%Personal property 10.5%Motor Carriers, Railroads, Airlines and Pipelines real and personal property 9.5% How do I get the best tax rate for my home?If you own a home, you want to be sure to obtain the 4% assessment rate if you live in the home as your legal residence. Otherwise, your tax rate will be 6%. To obtain the lower rate, you will need to complete an application with the county assessor. This should be done as soon as you move into your house, but may be filed anytime before January 15, when taxes are due. Once you file this application, you will not need to complete another one, unless ownership changes or use of the property changes. What is the personal property tax?Personal property tax is collected annually on motor vehicles, recreational vehicles, watercraft (includes boats, wave runners, jet skis, etc.) and airplanes. Personal property tax also applies to equipment, furniture, fixtures and machinery primarily used by businesses. Household goods in your residence are exempt from personal property tax.The value of your motor vehicle is determined by the South Carolina Department of Revenue using standards and guidelines established by the auto industry. The Department of Revenue prepares a manual each year for the county auditor to use in preparing your personal property tax bill. The manual lists each model and make of all available motor vehicles. The value of your vehicle is multiplied by the assessment ratio (10.5% or .105) to determine the assessed value of your vehicle. The millage rate is multiplied by the assessed value of your vehicle to determine the amount of personal property tax you owe.Vehicles with unusually high mileage may qualify for a reduced value. Your county auditor will require you to prove your mileage by showing a vehicle inspection receipt, by signing an affidavit, by completing an application, by visual inspection or some other method. In order to receive the high-mileage reduction, you must call or visit your county auditor=s office no later than the day your personal property taxes are due.Personal property taxes on motor vehicles and recreational vehicles must be paid before your license plates can be renewed. Taxes are due throughout the year on a staggered monthly schedule. Taxes on watercraft and airplanes are due no later than January 15 of the following year.

Kim Guest
The Lawton Team

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Phone: 864-918-0066
Dated: September 26th 2013
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