What are assessment and reassessment?
Assessment is the process of
placing value on a property for the purpose of
property taxation. Reassessment is an update of
all real property assessments in the county,
conducted by the county assessor to equalize
values among taxpayers and to adjust values to
current market conditions.
How often is property reassessed?
Reassessed values of real
estate are placed on the tax rolls by the
assessor in odd-numbered years. Personal
property is assessed every year.
What happens in the even year?
For most real estate owners,
nothing. However, if new construction and
improvements have taken place, the property’s
market value is adjusted to reflect the added
value of the new construction. The total value
is based upon the market conditions as of
January first of the preceding year.
For example, if your house
was valued by the assessor at $50,000 as of
January 1, 2000, and you added a bedroom in June
of 2000, the increase in value would be added
for the 2001 tax year. If the house with the new
bedroom would have been worth $60,000 on January
1, 2000, your market value for 2001 would be
Is all property taxed?
No. Exempt real estate
includes property owned by governments, property
used as non-profit cemeteries, exclusively for
religious worship, for schools and colleges, and
for purely charitable purposes.
Why is reassessment necessary?
Constitution, all assessments for property tax
purposed must be based upon market value and be
uniform within the same class or subclass of
Over time, the value of
property may change, depending upon its nature,
location, and other factors. Some values change
more rapidly than others. Reassessment is the
only way to be sure that the taxpayer is being
taxed fairly, and is taxed the same as other
Who is responsible for reassessing property?
The county assessor is
primarily responsible for assessing property
within the county. However, the assessor’s work
is subject to review by the county Board of
Equalization and the State Tax Commission. The
State Tax Commission is the state agency charged
with general supervision of assessors and with
enforcing property tax laws.
What are assessors' qualifications?
Assessors are trained in all
aspects of the assessment process including
determining value using the income approach,
cost approach, and comparable sales approach.
Assessors must participate in approved
continuing education courses to remain certified
with the State Tax Commission.
What is market value?
Market value, true value in
money and appraised value have the same meaning
under Missouri Law. A simple definition of
market value is the price the property would
bring when offered for sale by a person who is
willing but not obligated to sell it, and is
bought by a person who is willing to purchase it
but who is not forced to do so.
How is my assessment level established?
Once the estimate of market
value has been determined, the assessor
calculates a percentage of that value to arrive
at assessed value. The percentage is based on
the classification, determined by the type of
property or how it is used. The percentages are:
|Commercial & All
As an example, a residence
with a market value of $50,000 would be assessed
at 19%, which would place its assessed value at
How are the real estate classifications
Missouri statutes define the
three subclasses of real estate:
Residential property is all real
property improved by a structure which
is used or intended to be used for
residential living by human occupants,
vacant land in connection with an
airport, land used as a golf course, and
manufactured home parks, but residential
property shall not include facilities
used primarily for transient housing.
Agricultural and Horticultural property
is that which is actively used for those
purposes. The value of this land is
established by its productivity, based
on soil productivity guidelines by the
State Tax Commission. It is not based on
market value; however, when the highest
and best use of land is considered to be
agricultural, and it is not actively
farmed, it is assessed according to
market value and not by productivity
Utility, industrial, commercial and
railroad property, and any other real
estate that does not fit either of the
other two classes. Includes mines,
stores, factories, and property of
How does the assessor value my real property?
A number of methods are used.
The assessor’s staff looks at new construction
that has taken place, sales prices of comparable
property located nearby, the condition of your
property, and any other factors that can help
place an accurate value on the property.
Three Techniques are
– First, the value of the land is estimated,
as if vacant. The assessor then adds the
amount it would take to replace your
structure with one of the similar utility,
including current costs of materials and
labor, profit, overhead, permit fees, and
the like. If your structure is not new, the
assessor then approximates depreciation from
all causes, and subtracts that from the
calculation of replacement cost.
– Your property is evaluated based on
comparable properties that have recently
sold, and is adjusted for differences such
as a garage, finished basement, or better
location. Where there are frequent sales and
similarities in properties, this can be the
most reliable approach for residential
– This approach works well for apartments,
shopping centers and office buildings. The
assessor estimates potential gross income
from rentals, then subtracts an amount for
vacancies and operating expenses. The amount
of net income is then converted to a value
for the property, using a process called
Will all property values change due to
All values are likely to
change, but not all will change to the same
extent. Market values increase more in some
neighborhoods than in others. A major purpose of
reassessment is to make sure that the new values
reflect all changes that have occurred.
If no improvements have been made to my
property, why should the assessed value
Over time, market value
changes even if no improvements are made to the
property. Many people sell their homes for much
more than they paid for them years earlier. The
statutes require that property be periodically
reassessed to maintain realistic market values
and treat all taxpayers fairly.
Will I be notified if there is an increase in my
The assessor is required by
the statues to notify the owner of record of any
increase in valuation of real property.
What if I disagree with my assessment?
do not agree with your assessment, there are
three steps you can take in the appeal process.
Remember that an assessment is based on current
market value and our objective here is to
establish the correct market value of the
property. Stating that property taxes are too
high is not relevant testimony. You should
determine what you believe to be the value of
your property and gather and present evidence
that supports that value. Such evidence could
include photographs, the recent sale of your
property, or the oral testimony of someone who
has done a recent appraisal of your property.
Board of Equalization
satisfied after the informal
meeting, you should fill out the
Cass County Board of Equalization
This form must be returned to the
Cass County Assessor postmarked by
June 18th, 2011. The board will hear
evidence from the assessor and you
regarding the value of the property
which is the subject of the appeal.
State Tax Commission
You have a right
to appeal the decision of the board
of equalization to the State Tax
Commission by September 30th, 2012 or 30 days after the final
action of the board of
equalization—whichever is later.
How does reassessment affect
It depends. An increase in assessed
value does not necessarily equate to an
increase in property taxes. Your taxes
are calculated by multiplying your
assessed value times the combined levies
of the taxing entities which levy a tax
on the particular property. If levies
increase, taxes may increase even if
assessed value remain unchanged or
decrease. It follows that, if levies
decrease, an increase in assessed values
may not cause an increase in taxes. One
factor which can cause a decrease in
levies is a rollback which was discussed
in the previous example. Another is a
voluntary reduction voted by the
Tax levies are normally set during
August. That means when you receive a
notice that your assessment has been
increased, it is too early to be able to
calculate how the change in assessed
value will affect your taxes. You will
not know until the rates have been set
by all of the local governments that tax
This information is designed to
explain the reassessment process in
Missouri. It is based on the laws in
effect at the time it was written.
Nothing here gives anyone any greater
rights than they would have by law. If
the laws change, the facts and
procedures mentioned may also change.