Patty Bauscher

Gooding County Assessor

Phone: (208) 934-5666

Fax: (208) 934-5667

pbauscher@co.gooding.id.us

145 7th Ave E.

Gooding, ID 83330

Patty

Gooding County Assessor

The Office of the County Assessor is primarily concerned with determining equitable values on both real and personal property for tax purposes. The assessor also acts as the agent of the Department of Idaho Transportation in titling and registering vehicles. In addition, Idaho law (§46-104, I.C.) provides that if the governor thinks it is necessary to call up a militia, the governor may order the assessor to carry out a registration of all county residents liable for such service.

The Office of the County Assessor is responsible for the assessment of property. Determining the value of real and personal property for tax purposes is the first step in property tax administration,. The duties of the assessor in regard to this function are prescribed in Title 63 of the Idaho Code.

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Real Property Assessment 
Assessment of real and personal property that is entered on the property roll is a continuing process. Land and improvements on the land, such as buildings, are assessed in categories. All property is to be assessed uniformly throughout the state at its market value for assessment purposes.

The assessor is required to have an accurate and complete plat book of land in the county, with ownership records kept up-to-date. Some counties do this by contractual arrangement with the local land title office, which furnishes photocopies of all changes in ownership. Others have deputies in charge of the plats who follow all property transfers and make the necessary changes in the plat books and other assessment records.

Legal descriptions of new and altered taxing districts and maps of new districts and of altered portions of existing districts must be filed with the county assessor, the county recorder and the State Tax Commission within 30 days after the change is effected.

Land valuation is basic in real property appraisal for tax purposes. Periodic revaluation of all property is carried out under rules promulgated by the State Tax Commission. There is constant updating of values of lots and lands that have changed in use since the last complete revaluation with an actual sampling of sales used in estimating current land values.

To ensure that all properties are appraised at current market value for assessment purposes the assessor is to carry out a continuing program of valuation of all properties pursuant to rules prescribed by the State Tax Commission.

In order to promote uniform assessment of property, taxable property must be appraised or indexed annually. To achieve this, each property in the county must be physically reappraised at least once in a five year cycle. This results in a complete appraisal of all property every five years. The results of the annual twenty percent appraisal must be used to index all property not actually appraised to reflect current market values.

The county assessor must maintain records showing when each parcel or item of property was last appraised. The Board of County Commissioners of each county is to furnish the assessor with such additional funds and personnel as may be required to carry out the valuation program and may levy a tax not to exceed four hundredths percent (0.04%) of market value for assessment purposes to pay the costs.

The State Tax Commission prepares and distributes to each county assessor rules which prescribe the manner in which market value for assessment purposes is to be determined for tax purposes. The rules require each assessor to find market value for assessment purposes of all property within the county according to recognized appraisal methods and techniques as set by the Commission, provided that the actual and functional use must be a major consideration when determining market valuation for assessment purposes.

To maximize uniformity and equity in assessment, the rules require, to the extent practicable, the use of reproduction or replacement cost less depreciation as opposed to historic cost less depreciation whenever cost is considered as a single one of the several factors in establishing market value of depreciable property. State law requires that all property subject to assessment shall be assessed for taxation.

The property assessment roll must be completed and delivered to the clerk of the Board of County Commissioners on or before the fourth Monday of June. The clerk must transmit it to the Board of County Commissioners for equalization.

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Personal Property Assessment 

All personal property is reassessed each year by the assessor’s office. The items included are construction equipment, business furniture, and fixtures, transient personal property such as road building equipment, certain types of manufactured homes and many other categories of personal property not easily located and listed.

The assessor must send a personal property declaration to property owners to use in reporting their personal property for the year. Since the annual date for assessment is on the first day of January, personal property reporting sheets are sent out early in the year, with a March 15 deadline for their return. These reports are supplemented by official spot checks by deputies in the field.

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Property Assessment Notifications and Appeals

Owners of property in Gooding County receive their annual assessment notices early in June, which notifies them of the current year’s market value for their property. The value is used to determine the amount of property taxes due later in the year.

In addition to the new assessed value, the assessment notice also shows the previous year's value. The actual tax bill will be mailed out in November by the county treasurer and will be based on the new levies.

Property owners are encouraged to review the assessment notices and contact the assessor’s office if they have any questions. Market value reviews are heard by the assessor’s office through the fourth Monday in June. The assessment notice provides information about further appeals procedures.

Idaho law requires that each property be physically reappraised by the assessor’s office at least once every five years to assure that it is as close to market value as possible. To keep the property value in line with market trends, in each of the other four years of the cycle the law requires that a market adjustment be applied to the property, based on the selling prices of similar properties.

Owners of business equipment who failed to return their Idaho Personal Property Declaration will be able to do so when they receive their assessment notices. An estimated value is used for assessment because the equipment was not reported, as required by Idaho law. The estimate can be removed if the owner completes a declaration and returns it to the assessor before the protest deadline (the fourth Monday in June). Otherwise, the owner will be taxed on the estimated assessment value.

Anyone with questions about the assessment or the appeals process should contact the assessor’s office to review the appraisal as soon as the assessment notice is received. It is important not to wait until the tax bill is received to review the assessment. Idaho law requires that appointments for protests be made on or before the fourth Monday in June.

Placing Market Value on Property

The assessor’s office is to place value on properties that represent typical sale and/or purchase prices of similar properties. All property is assessed as of January 1 each year using sales of property occurring between January 1 and December 31 of the previous year. If too few or no sales are available, the assessor can use sales from other time periods or similar areas.

The assessor’s office defends values or appraisals using current sales information of comparable properties and making adjustments for dissimilar characteristics between the subject and sales. This process demonstrates that the subject property is valued according to market sales.

For a meaningful and productive appeal, the property owner should supply evidence that establishes error in the appraisal of the property. It is important to employ comparables from the same location as the subject and to consider age, type and condition. Sales occurring this year will be considered for next year’s assessment. It is essential to understand the definition of typical when supplying information to the assessor. When several comparable properties sell, the assessor applies the average or typical values gathered from such data in determining the assessment instead of picking the highest or lowest values.

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To Protest Property Taxes

Property taxes are created by spending incurred by schools, local government and other taxing districts. There are methods available to protest taxes. Concerned taxpayers should protest spending by attending the annual budget hearings of the taxing districts that affect the property owner’s taxes. Property owners may also make personal contact with elected officials who authorize and control spending (i.e., school board members, mayors, city councilmen, county commissioners).

While the assessor’s office strives to place fair market value on property, it has no authority in the spending levels of schools and local government.

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Tax Relief Programs

Homeowner's Exemption

WHAT: This is an exemption provided by Idaho state law to help the property owner pay less on property taxes. The exemption deducts one-half of the assessed value of the home and garage on an amount set yearly by the Tax Commission based on housing index. (See Idaho Code 63-602G)

HOW: Applications for this exemption are available at the assessor’s office.
How do you qualify?

  • A valid Idaho driver’s license (if you drive)
  • Vehicle is licensed in Idaho (if you own a vehicle)
  • Registered Idaho voter (if you vote)
  • If you file income tax, at the appropriate time the property owner would file a full year Idaho resident income tax return
  • You reside in Idaho for a majority of the year

WHEN: On existing homes, the deadline to apply is April 15 of the year you began occupying the home. On homes that have never before been occupied, the owner must apply within thirty days of occupying the home.

To avoid missing deadlines, the assessor’s office suggests that the property owner file as soon as the home is purchased and occupied.

WHERE: Homeowner’s Exemption applications must be returned or mailed to the assessor’s office.

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Circuit Breaker Program 

WHAT: This program reduces property taxes for qualified applicants based on income for the previous calendar year. It is managed by the State Tax Commission. For homeowners who qualify, the property taxes on the home may be reduced by as much as $1,320.

WHO: You may qualify if you meet these requirements:
1. You owned and lived in a home or mobile home in Idaho that was your primary residence before April 15 of that year. (You may qualify if you lived in a care facility or nursing home. Contact the assessor for information.)
2. Your income was $28,000 or less. 
3. You were in one or more of the following categories as of January 1, 2007:

  • Age 65 or older
  • Widow or widower
  • Blind
  • Fatherless or motherless child under 18 years of age
  • Former prisoner of war/hostage
  • Veteran with a ten percent or more service-connected disability or receiving a VA pension for a non-service-connected disability Disabled (as recognized by the Social Security Administration, Railroad Retirement Board or Federal Civil Service)

WHEN: You must apply for the property tax deduction in the current year between January 1 and April 15.

HOW: Contact the assessor’s office for application materials. If you need help, the assessor’s staff can assist you.

You will be required to show proof of your eligibility, income, and medical expenses when you file the application. (If you file federal income tax, bring a copy of your form.) You will also be required to provide documentation to establish your filing status.

If you have questions regarding income guidelines (e.g., what to include as income and what expenses you may deduct), or for other information regarding the Circuit Breaker program, contact the assessor’s office (208) 934-4221 or call the Idaho State Tax Commission (208) 334-7736, (208) 334-7854, toll-free from Idaho, Oregon, Utah and Washington 1-800-972-7660, or TTD 1-800-377-3529.

If your application is approved, your property tax reduction will appear on the tax notice sent to you in November.

Please Note: You must apply and qualify each year to receive this benefit. Property tax reductions are not renewed automatically.

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Motor Vehicles 
The Assessor acts as an agent for the Idaho Department of Transportation in titling and registering vehicles (Gooding County DMV). You may contact our office at (208)934-5668 or by mail at 145 7th Ave E., Gooding, ID 83330.

All vehicles that are operated or pulled on public highways, waterways, and lands must be titled and registered. This includes cars, trucks, motorcycles, snowmobiles, off-road motorbikes, all-terrain vehicles (ATVs), utility-type vehicles (UTVs), boats (vessels), utility trailers (weighing over 2000 lbs), pick-up mounted campers, travel trailers and motor homes.

However, there are some exceptions:

  • Utility trailers with an un-laden weight below 2000 lbs are not titled but must be registered.
  • Off-road motorbikes and ATVs were not titled in Idaho prior to 1991. Any off-road motorbike and ATV (regardless of model year) purchased or brought to Idaho after 1991 must be titled.
  • Any vessel operating on Idaho waterways with an attached (permanent or non-permanent) mode of propulsion must be registered. Vessels were not titled in Idaho prior to 2000. Any vessel, model year 2000 or newer, with a permanently attached mode of propulsion (inboard, in/outboard, sail or personal watercraft-jet ski) and any non-exempt vessel that was acquired prior to 2000 may optionally be titled, unless they are being financed, in which case they must be titled. Once a vessel has been titled, every subsequent Idaho owner must also title.
  • UTVs were not titled in Idaho prior to 2006, however, must be titled now to be registered.
  • Specialty off-road vehicles that do not fall in the specifications of ATV or UTV are not titled but can be registered for off-road use only.
  • Pick-up mounted campers were not titled in Idaho prior to 2009. Any pick-up mounted camper (regardless of model year) purchased or brought to Idaho after 2009 must be titled.
  • Contact Gooding County DMV directly for additional information on these exceptions.

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Residency Requirements

For the purposes of vehicle registration and titling, you become a resident of Idaho when you have had your principal home within Idaho for 90 days (this does not include your workplace, vacation home, or part-time residence). You must register and title your vehicle within this time.

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To Apply for Vehicle Registration and Title 
  
FOR RESIDENTS NEW TO THE STATE:
The following is a list of required documents and fees:
1. The title (for used vehicles). If recently purchased, it must be properly released by the previous owner and lien holder, if any; or the Manufacturer’s Certificate of Origin (for new vehicles) must be properly assigned by the dealer to the new owner. If a lien holder holds the title, bring the lien holders name, address and the loan number as this speeds things up. If your title has been lost, you will need to apply for a duplicate title from the state of issuance. 
2. A Bill of Sale must include the vehicle description, sales price, buyer’s name, original signature of seller and date of sale.
3. A Vehicle Identification Number Inspection must be completed by an officer of the law, DMV employee, military police officer, or any Idaho licensed dealer. This includes an odometer reading, which is required for motor vehicles less than 10 years old and under 16,000 pounds gross vehicle weight (GVW).
4. Sales Tax equal to 6 percent of the purchase price (plus Doc fees and minus the trade-in if purchased from a licensed dealer), documentation that at least 6 percent sales tax was paid to the state in which the vehicle was already titled in the owner’s name with an out-of-state address. If the vehicle has been owned for at least 3 months prior to moving to Idaho, sales tax is not applicable.
5. The title fee is $14.00. VIN Inspection fee is $5.00. Bring your personal identification. This could be a driver’s license, identification card, etc.
4. Bring cash, check associated with a local bank, or debit/credit card (3% fee charge on card transactions) for payment of the applicable taxes and fees. 

FOR CURRENT RESIDENTS:
If you have just purchased a vehicle, you must bring the vehicle title and a bill of sale to the Gooding County DMV Office. If it has not already been collected, the sales tax from the sale will be collected at time of registration. If the title is from out of state, you must also bring the vehicle for a VIN inspection and odometer reading. If you purchased the vehicle from an Idaho dealer, please bring the pink temporary registration out of the back window, along with the plate number you wish to transfer, if any.

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Late Filing Penalty

According to Idaho law a $20.00 late filing penalty will be charged if you have not completed title work in your name and you have been living in Idaho for 120 days. The late filing penalty applies to any Idaho resident who does not apply for title within 30 days of the purchase of either a titled vehicle or a titled vessel.

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Registering and Titling Through the Mail

Idaho residents who are temporarily in another state (i.e., students or military personnel) may request titles and registrations for their vehicle(s) through the mail.

Lien holders located in another state who are financing a vehicle being titled in Idaho may title through the mail. If there is a lien recorded, the title will be mailed to the lien holder of record. If there is no lien holder recorded, the title will be mailed to the titled owner. The registration and license plates will be issued and mailed (if applied for through the mail) to the titled owner.

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Duplicate Titles and Corrections

Only the owner or lien holder of record, or their appointed agent, may apply for a duplicate title in Idaho. To properly complete the duplicate title application, the owner or lien holder needs to have both the vehicle identification number and the title number (these can be found on the vehicle’s Idaho registration form). The duplicate application must be completed in full and include the applicant’s notarized signature. If a lien holder is shown on the title record, the duplicate title will be issued with the same lien holder and will be mailed to the lien holder unless the application is accompanied by either an original or verified copy of a satisfaction of lien signed by the lien holder of record. If a Power of Attorney is used to sign the duplicate application, the titled owner's signature must be notarized and the completed Power of Attorney form must be submitted. If the error was caused by faulty information provided on the original application, an $14.00 title correction fee is required.

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Recording Liens

To record a lien on an existing Idaho title, the lien holder name and address must be printed in the new lien holder section of the title. The title and an $14.00 fee should be mailed or brought into the Gooding County Assessor’s Office so the new lien holder information can be recorded on the title. Once title work is completed it will be mailed to the new lien holder of record. 

VERY IMPORTANT:  If a private party is selling to another private party and the seller is financing the vehicle, the seller should sign off on the title releasing interest in the vehicle and then immediately sign back on as the lien holder. A release of liability should then be filed with the local DMV or ITD. This form will release the seller from liability of the vehicle in the event the buyer does not title. On recent Idaho titles, this form is attached to the bottom of the original title. You may download a copy of this form by going to http://www2.state.id.us/itd/. Once the title has been signed off, and the Release of Liability filed, then the seller will no longer be liable for the vehicle. If the seller does not complete these steps and allow the buyer to title in their name, the seller could remain liable for the vehicle until he releases his interest.

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Registration Fees

The following are approximate yearly renewal fees. Two year registrations are available on some types of registrations. If registering for the first time, there will be additional fees. For exact fee amounts please contact Gooding County DMV at (208) 934-5668.

Passenger cars: $32.00 to $56.00 (depending on vehicle age) for renewals. 

Non-Commercial and Commercial Trucks: $56.00 for minimum weight option (up to 16,000 lbs.) Up to 54,000 Weight load may be registered at County level. For trucks above this weight level, customers will have to register through The One Stop Shop in Boise. Assistance is available at the Gooding County DMV for customers who need help in registering with the One Stop Shop. Fees are calculated according to registration weight. These fees are prorated monthly. Contact Gooding County for exact amounts.

Motor homes: $32.00 to $56.00 (depending on vehicle age) PLUS RV sticker fee* (see recreational vehicle stickers below) for renewals.

Motorcycles: $23.00 for renewals. 
ATVs, UTVs and Motorbikes (off-road): $12.00. A restricted use on road plate is available for an additional $3.00 fee.

Recreational camp trailers: $7.75 PLUS RV sticker fee* for renewals. 

Boats: $31.50 for boats up to 12 feet (plus $2 for each additional foot in length)

Plate fee: $6.00 for large plates; $3.00 for small plates. Mailing fee: $2.60 for two plates; $1.90 for one large plate or small plates. Idaho law requires license plates be replaced every 7 years.

*Recreational Vehicle Stickers: Motor home, RV trailer, and pick-up mounted camper owners are required by the Parks and Recreation Department to purchase a recreational vehicle sticker which costs $8.50 for the first $1,000 of market value and $5.00 for each additional $1,000 of market value. These are available at all local DMV’s. Market value is taken from the current NADA Recreational Vehicle Appraisal Guide.

Snowmobiles: $32.50 (October 31 to October 31)

Special Interest License Plates: You can obtain other types of license plates when you register your vehicle at the County DMV office. If you request a design other than the Standard design, there is an additional $35 initial fee upon issuance and an additional $25 renewal fee added to your regular registration fees each year. The additional fees will go towards the designated programs associated with each plate. For a complete list, you may go to http://www2.state.id.us/itd/.

The initial fee for a personalized standard license plate is $25 in addition to the regular registration fees at the time of issuance and $15 in addition to the regular registration fees each renewal year.

Handicap Placard applications are available at Gooding County DMV. They will need to be completed by the applicant and signed by their licensed physician. Once completed, the applicant may return the application to our office and a 30 day temporary will be issued. The permanent placard will be sent to them from the Idaho Transportation Department.

For first-time issuance of special plates (personalized, handicapped, disabled veteran, etc.) please contact the Idaho Department of Motor Vehicles in Boise at (208) 334-8606 or obtain an application from the Gooding County DMV.

For additional detailed information and forms, you can also visit the Idaho Transportation Department's website at http://www2.state.id.us/itd/

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Frequently Asked Questions

For additional information from the Idaho Transportation Department’s Driver Services and Vehicle Services:
Call (208) 334-8606, 8:00 am – 5:00 pm, Monday – Friday
Or go to their website: www2.state.id.us/itd/index.html
For vehicle services form and publications, go towww2.state.id.us/itd/dmv/Vehicleservices/vs_forms.html

 1. What are the Important Tax Dates?

  • March 15 Due date for Agricultural classification applications
  • April 15 Due date for homeowner’s exemption applications and property tax reduction (circuit breaker) applications
  • Mid to late May Assessment Notices must be mailed by the first Monday in June
  • 3rd Monday in May Due date for preliminary budgets for next fiscal year (beginning October 1)
  • June 20 Due date for second half of prior year’s tax payment
  • 4th Monday in June Deadline for Board of Equalization appeals
  • End of June County Auditor sends value estimates to taxing districts
  • 2nd Monday in July Board of Equalization closes. Assessment Roll is forwarded to County Auditor.
  • 1st week of September State Tax Commission sends Operating Property values to County Auditor
  • 2nd Monday in September County Auditor receives budget requests
  • 3rd Monday in September County Auditor sets tax levy rates
  • 4th Monday in October State Tax Commission reviews and approves tax levy rates
  • November 1 County Auditor computes individual property tax charges and sends them to Treasurer for billing
  • 4th Monday in November County Treasurer mails the tax bills
  • December 20 Due date for first half of property tax payments (full payment may be made at this time)
  • December 31 Due date for timber classification applications and timber management plans

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2. How is property assessed?

Idaho law requires that all taxable property be assessed at market value each year. The county assessor develops valuation guidelines based on sales prices and some of the features of homes that have recently sold. Some of the features that often influence what a buyer would pay for your home and land include size, quality, age, condition, and location. This information is used to estimate how much a buyer might reasonably pay for your home if it were to sell on January 1st of the assessment year.

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3. How often are property values adjusted?

Property values may change each year depending on real estate market changes. An appraiser from the assessor’s office is required to visit your property at least once in each five-year period. During the other four years, the assessor will use information from property sales and/or from the inspections of other properties to estimate the current market value for your property.

The county assessor uses this information to estimate how much a buyer might reasonably pay for your home if it were to sell on January 1st of the assessment year.

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4. How can my property be assessed on improvements when I haven’t made any?

In property assessment the term “improvements” does not refer only to remodeling, renovating or upgrading. “Improvements” are buildings (house, garage, manufactured home, etc.), paving, or other structures that add value to your land regardless of when they were completed.

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5. What is personal property?

Taxable personal property consists of items used commercially, such as furniture, fixtures, art, farm equipment, signs, unregistered aircraft and unregistered watercraft. It also includes items used commercially for convenience, decoration, service, or storage. Please contact the assessor’s office with specific questions.

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6. What personal property is assessed?

All personal property in Idaho, unless expressly exempt, is subject to assessment and taxation. Forms for your use in listing of personal property are available from the assessor’s office.

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7. What if personal property is not reported?

The county assessor is required to assess property that is not declared. The assessment is estimated based upon the best information available.

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8. At what value is personal property assessed?

Personal property is assessed at retail market value. This value includes shipping and installation costs. Several methods are used to arrive at the value. Depreciation tables, sales information, cost guides, and other resources are used in this process.

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9. How are my personal property taxes determined?

The Assessor does not determine tax amounts. The amount of taxes is determined by the budgets of the taxing districts in which the personal property is located.

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10. What if I close or sell my business?

If you sell or close your business during the year, you should contact the assessor’s office as soon as possible. The assessor will explain how the assessment will be handled.

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11. What makes property real or personal?

Real property consists of land and the improvements attached to it. Personal property is normally not attached to the land but is generally mobile. It does not last as long as real property.

Personal property used by the owner in his or her private home is not subject to property tax (household furnishings, for example). If the same property is used in a business activity whether in a private home or elsewhere, it is subject to property tax.

Properly registered vehicles, including recreational vehicles, are not subject to property tax.

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12. How do I know what value has been estimated for my property?

The value for your property is shown on your assessment notice. This notice is usually mailed to you by the first Monday in June. Contact the assessor’s office if you do not receive this notice.

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13. What if I disagree with the value estimated for my property?

The assessor’s office maintains a file of information on your property. If you have questions about your assessment, request the assessor review the accuracy of the records. You may appeal the valuation to the Board of Equalization (which consists of the county commissioners) for the county in which the property is located. Most appeals must be filed with your county clerk by the fourth Monday in June. Properties assessed at other times of the year have different appeal dates.

Property values maintained by the assessor’s office are public records. You may ask to review the value of other properties in that county. 
You must be prepared to document your reasons for requesting a change in your property’s assessed value and prove that the assessor’s value is not the current market value of the property.

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14. How is my property tax determined?

The amount of tax is determined from the budget needs of the taxing districts. There are many kinds of taxing districts in Idaho. Some, like cities and counties, levy taxes to provide a wide range of services. Others levy taxes for specific purposes like highways, schools, or fire protection. 
Officials for each taxing district determine the annual budget needed to provide services for the district. The approved budget is divided by the total taxable value of all properties within the district.

The result is the district’s tax rate. This rate, multiplied by the taxable value of your property, determines the amount of taxes you owe to the district. 
Every property is located within several independent-taxing districts which means your property tax bill includes taxes for all the districts in which you live. This combination of taxing districts is known as a “tax code area.” Each of these areas is assigned a number that appears on your assessment notice and tax bill. Within each tax code area, the total tax rate is generally the same for all properties.

The taxable value of your property determines how much tax you pay in relation to other properties. Assessments must be accurate for all taxpayers to pay their fair share of the total property taxes.

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15. How does the assessor determine the value on my property? 
Buyers and sellers in the real estate market establish value. The assessor's staff researches the market and collects information about properties to estimate value.

The assessor's office has no control over tax rates.

The Assessor uses standard methods, which utilize the three traditional approaches to value (cost, market, and income), to estimate the fair market value of a given property.

It is important to note that the Assessor is simply measuring the information produced in the market to determine the estimated value. The economic principles of supply and demand, along with the desires of the purchasers and sellers of property, determine fair value.

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16. Why do property values change?

A property’s value may change for a number of reasons. The most obvious is that the property changes. A bedroom, garage, or bathroom is added, or part of the property is destroyed by vandalism or fire.

The most frequent cause of a change in value is a change in the market. If a community’s major industry leaves, property values can collapse. As older neighborhoods with good quality housing are discovered by young homebuyers, prices gradually rise and then may even soar as the neighborhood becomes fashionable. A shortage of detached homes in a desirable city neighborhood can send prices to extreme levels. In a recession, larger homes may stay on the market for a long time, but more affordable homes are in demand, so their prices rise.

In a stable neighborhood, with no extraordinary pressure from the market, inflation may increase property value.

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17. How are the taxes on my property determined?

Taxpayers need services. The taxing districts (counties, cities, schools, highways, fire, water, sewer, library, etc.) are required to provide services needed by their constituencies. This drives the budget to provide those services.

The budget is used to determine a levy rate. The levy rates for each individual taxing district where a property is located are added together to arrive at the total tax rate for any particular property.

This rate is multiplied by the net taxable value of the property to determine the amount of the tax charged.

The levy rates for each taxing district and the total levy rate appear on the tax bills mailed by the Treasurer’s Office.

For more information contact the Gooding County Treasurer’s Office.

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18. When will I get my property tax bill?

You should usually receive your tax bill by the end of November. If you have questions about your tax bill, contact your county treasurer.

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19. How can my taxes go up if my property’s taxable value doesn’t increase?

Tax rates may increase due to a taxing district’s emergency needs or voter-approved bonds and override levies. Total tax rates may increase due to the creation of a new taxing district that includes your property.

For example, if business has declined and slowed for local industry or agriculture, a county’s economy may suffer and affected property values may go down. However, your taxes may be higher since taxing districts still need to pay for basic services.

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20. Are there limits on increases in property taxes?

Yes. Most taxing districts have limits on the tax rates they may charge. Additionally, districts are limited to annual increases of three percent plus an allowance for growth on a portion of their budgets. The growth allowance is determined on the basis of new construction and annexation that occurred during the previous year.

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21. Why do I pay higher taxes than my neighbor?

You may live in a different taxing district than your neighbor. Also, your property may appear similar to your neighbor’s but there may be enough differences in land size, square footage of homes, quality or condition of land that result in value differences between properties.

Also, your neighbor may be eligible for some form of property tax reduction for which you either did not qualify or did not apply.

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22. Is there any tax relief available to homeowners?

Yes. Idaho has a homeowner’s exemption for owner-occupied homes, including manufactured homes, which are primary dwellings. This exempts 50% or $89,325 (for 2007), whichever is less, of the value of your home (including up to one acre of land). Taxes are computed on the remaining value. You may also receive the homeowner’s exemption if you are paying occupancy taxes. The homeowner's exemption is based on the HPI (House Price Index) each year.

Exemption applications are available from the assessor’s office. When an application is approved, the exemption is permanent as long as you own and occupy the property. If the property is sold, the new owner must file a new application.

Although there are no income or age restrictions you can only quality for an exemption on one home at a time. You must own and occupy your home on January 1 of the tax year and must apply for an exemption by April 15th. 
You may also qualify for a property tax reduction if you meet the income requirements and fit into one of the following categories:

  • Age 65 or older, widow or widower
  • Blind
  • Former POW
  • Fatherless or motherless minor
  • Qualifying disabled

Applications may be obtained from the assessor’s office and must be filed each year between January 1st and April 15th.

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23. What is an occupancy tax?

If you purchase and move into a newly constructed home (that has never before been occupied) after January 1st, you will pay an occupancy tax instead of property taxes for the portion of the year you live there. You must notify the assessor on or before the date you move into your new home. You can apply for a homeowner’s exemption on the occupancy tax.

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24. How do I get the mailing address changed on my property?

The Assessor’s Office is responsible for maintaining the property database with the correct owner name and mailing address. The Change of Address Request may not be used to change the owner’s name on a property.

In order to change the address, we need to be able to identify your property or properties. Please provide the Assessor’s Parcel Number or serial number (on the tax bills, the Treasurer calls this a “Bill Number”).

We require a written request to change the mailing address for Assessment Notices. You may complete a Change of Address Request form available at the assessor’s office, send a written change of address in a letter, on a postcard, or Post Office change of address form or we can mail you the Change of Address Request form. You may also send us a copy of your Assessment Notice or tax bill showing the change. Our mailing address is: 
If you did not receive an Assessment Notice, contact the assessor’s office to determine what address we have on record.

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25. How do I change the name of the owner on my property?

There is a wide variety of situations in which the ownership of a property or name on the property might change. These include, but are not limited to, sale of property, death of one of the owners, addition of owners, removal of owners, and foreclosure on a property.

The assessor’s office is not able to provide legal advice to owners or potential owners on how to handle a change of name/ownership. Therefore, we recommend that you contact a title company or an attorney to advise you on the procedure.

If you think that you have all the documentation needed to effect a name change, please bring it directly to the assessor’s office. A mapping analyst will review the material to see if it is sufficient for us to process a name change.

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26. How do I correct the acreage on my property?

Each situation involving a question of acreage or change in the acres is different and must be examined individually by a Mapping Analyst. 
Acreage amendments need to be researched and calculated. Additional information supplied by the property owner may help in this regard. Please inform the Mapping Department of any surveys or description changes to your property that would be helpful in determining the proper acreage for any given parcel.

For more information contact the Mapping Department in the Assessor’s Office.

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27. How do I correct or change the boundaries of my property, such as a lot line adjustment?

Each situation involving a change in boundaries is different and must be examined individually by a Mapping Analyst.

Changing the boundaries of properties may involve deeds for lot line adjustments between neighbors. A title company or surveyor can assist in the creation of the necessary documents to complete the lot line adjustment. A survey may be needed to comply with the requirements for State mapping standards.

The Assessor’s Office cannot provide legal advice or assist you in the creation or amendment of documents or surveys.

For more information contact the Mapping Department in the Assessor’s Office.

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28. How do I convert my manufactured home into real property?

Can I reverse a manufactured home from real property to personal property?
Please refer to the instructions on the back of the form “Statement of Intent to Declare Manufactured Home to Real Property.” The form is available from the assessor’s office. A Deputy Assessor will sign the form verifying that the land and home are under the same ownership.

The owner will then contact the building department located within his or her jurisdiction for inspection to verify the home is set according to Idaho Code 63-304.

The owner will have has his or her signature notarized and return the completed “Statement of Intent” form along with the original title to the manufactured home to the Recorder’s Office to record both documents. The Recorder’s office will return the original “Statement of Intent” and original title to the owner.

After recording, the owner will take the original “Statement of Intent” form and original title (NO COPIES) to the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). The DMV then forwards the documents to the Idaho Department of Transportation in Boise, and this office will eliminate the title for the manufactured home.

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29. Can I reverse a manufactured home from real property to personal property?

Obtain a form from the Assessor’s Office called a “Reversal of Declaration of Manufactured Home to Real Property.”

Prepay the current year’s property taxes on the home in the County treasurer’s office. If necessary, obtain a permission letter from the lender on the mortgage.

The owner’s signature should be notarized and then recorded in the Recorder’s Office.

The owner then takes the recorded “Reversal of Declaration” form (the original) to the Department of Vehicles to obtain a receipt of title. The new title is issued by the Idaho Department of Transportation in Boise.

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30. How do I change the location of my manufactured home?

The owner must first prepay the current year’s property taxes on the manufactured home. A mover will not hook onto the home for transport unless the owner provides the receipt from the Treasurer’s Office showing that the taxes are prepaid.

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31. How do I change ownership on my manufactured home?

THE TITLE IS THE LEGAL OWNERSHIP. Obtain a form from the Assessor’s Office. The current year’s property taxes on the home must be prepaid. The new owner takes the Treasurer’s prepaid tax receipt to the Department of Motor Vehicles to have the title changed.

If the manufactured home is your primary residence, apply to the “Mobile Home” Department of the Assessor’s Office for the Homeowners Exemption.

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32. How do I find out the name of a property owner and other property details?

The quickest way is to provide the assessor’s office with a parcel number to be entered into the property database.

Other methods include: A name search of the database; a property can be identified if the assessor is given the name of the platted subdivision and the lot and block numbers; a property may be identified from a partial list of addresses in the county; if the only information available is its location, you may locate it on a map in the assessor’s office, which provides parcel numbers that can be entered into the database to retrieve information about the parcel.

In addition to ownership name, mailing address and possible location address, other information that may be available in the parcel database includes, acreage of the parcel, assessed value, homeowner’s exemption, timber and agricultural classifications, and types of improvements on the land. It does not include telephone numbers or Social Security numbers. 
Other databases may provide the year built and square footage of structures, room grid, building dimensions, other residential characteristics, ownership history, records of some building permits and septic permits and homeowner exemptions.

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33. Can I see or purchase a map of my property?

Property ownership records and maps are NOT available online at this time.

Plat maps covering all properties in Gooding County are located in the assessor’s office. They are filed first by township, then by range, then by section, and then by quarter section. You can see these maps at the Assessor’s Office in the Gooding County Courthouse.

There are numerous maps which show the parcel numbers for each property. To find out which map shows your property, the assessor’s office needs that parcel number or a legal description.

The assessor’s office can make photocopies of portions of the plat maps. The cost is $0.25 for each page.

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34. What other maps can I purchase?

You can also purchase from the assessor’s office:

Survey maps - $4.00 per page
Recorder’s plat maps (platted subdivisions) - $4.00 a page

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35. What is the Timber Program; how do I qualify and apply for the timber classification?

The Idaho Code describes forest land as privately-owned land held and used primarily to grow and harvest trees of a marketable species and may be further identified by consideration of any of the following criteria:

  • Present use and silvicultural treatment evidence forestland.
  • Forest land has a dedicated use, which is further evidenced by a forest land management plan that includes eventual harvest of the forest crop required by Gooding County.
  • Forest land is bearing forest growth or land NOT converted to another use.
  • Forest land which has had the trees removed by man through harvest, including clear cuts or by natural disaster, such as, but not limited to, fire, and which, within five (5) years after harvest or initial assessment, will be reforested as specified by the Forest Practices Act (Idaho Code, Chapter 13, Title 38).

ACREAGE REQUIREMENTS: To qualify for the timber program, forestland owners must devote a minimum of 5.0 fully-stocked acres, excluding any improvements, to management of the timber for eventual harvest. Forest land ownership is held in two ways:

  1. Ownership of 5.0 or more acres but less than 5,000 acres
  2. Ownership of 5,000 or more acres

APPLICATION DEADLINE
The deadline to submit timber applications and management plans is December 31 of each year to qualify for the timber program in the following year. You must submit one application form, called the “Owner’s Designation of Forest Land Option,” for each individually assessed parcel. You may submit a Timberland Management Plan to cover each group of contiguous parcels (adjacent, or sharing the same parcel border) that you will manage as a single stand of timber. Timber application packets are available in the Assessor’s Office or you may request the forms by calling or writing our office.

FOREST LAND (TAX) OPTIONS WITHIN THE TIMBER PROGRAM: There are two forest land assessment options from which individual landowners (fewer than 5,000 acres total statewide ownership) may choose. The individual owners must designate which option under which they want their lands assessed. They are required by law to place all of their timberland ownership statewide under the same option.

Either option requires that landowners manage their timber as a crop that will be commercially harvested and sold (in part or whole) at some point in time. If landowners do not wish to raise their trees for harvest, they should not apply for this program.

When land is accepted into the timber program, it is classified as timberland and is assessed at a lower rate per acre than full market value rates. The intent is to enable landowners to use the tax dollars saved to actively manage the timber for harvest. The rates vary in Idaho according to your land’s location in one of four value zones within the State. The assessment rates per acre within each zone vary according to whether the land is graded as good, medium or poor production ground (production is how much tree growth occurs per acre, per year.). These production grades are placed by the Assessor’s Office.

For landowners with ownership of 5,000 or more acres, the forest tax law requires that the land be assessed under the Land Productivity tax option. For ownership of 5.0 acres to 5,000 acres, the owner may select either the Land Productivity option or the Bare Land and Yield option. A landowner must designate all their forestland in the State of Idaho under the same option. 
LAND PRODUCTIVITY OPTION: Under this option, every year the landowner pays taxes on the assessed value for the land and projected year growth. The owner does not pay taxes on the timber when it is harvested. When the timbered acres are removed from the timber program for any reason, the land is assessed at full market value. However, the landowner is not required to pay back taxes on the difference in value between full market value and the lower, taxable values placed on the land while it was in the program.

BARE LAND AND YIELD OPTION: Under this option, the landowner defers a portion of the property tax to be paid later.

  • The assessed value is calculated using rates much lower than those for the Land Productivity option. The owner pays taxes on this lower value for the timberland every year as for any other type of property.
  • In addition, a 3% yield tax is billed on the value of the timber itself when it is harvested. An advantage of this option is that the property tax may be paid partly from the income generated by sale of the timber.
  • When the land is removed from the Bare Land and Yield option or the timber program, deferred tax may be billed. This tax is based on the difference in total value between the Land Productivity option and the Bare Land and Yield option for the years the land was in the program, not to exceed ten (10) years, and less credit for any yield tax already paid. If the land is removed from the program because it is being developed, the deferred tax calculations are based on the difference between the Bare Land and Yield value and full market value.
  • A possible advantage of this option is that deferred tax may be paid out of the proceeds of the sale of the land. A possible disadvantage is that non-payment of deferred tax may result in a lien against the property.
  • Contact the Assessor’s Office for information on calculation of yield and deferred tax.

LENGTH OF THE TIMBER PROGRAM: The land remains in the program for as long as a landowner actively manages the land for eventual timber harvest. A landowner may remove the land from the program at any time, effective as of January 1 of the next year. Owners of 5.0 to 5,000 acres of timberland may elect to change the assessment (tax) option on all properties in the timber program in the State as of the ten-year anniversary of the 1982 Forest Tax Law. In 2002 owners may change the assessment option, effective January 1, 2003. The next opportunity after that to change options will be in 2012 to take effect in 2013.

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36. What is the Agricultural Program and how do I apply?

The Idaho Code describes agricultural land as land actively devoted to agriculture and a part of a bona fide profit-making agricultural venture. The land is further described as land:

  • Used to produce field crops, including, but not limited to, grains, feed crops, fruits, and vegetables; or
  • Used by the owner or bona fide lessee for grazing of livestock to be sold as part of a net profit-making enterprise; or
  • In a cropland retirement or rotation program.
  • Land shall not be classified or valued as agricultural land which is part of a platted subdivision with stated restrictions prohibiting its use for agricultural purposes.
  • Land utilized for grazing of a horse or other animals kept primarily for personal use or pleasure rather than as part of a bona fide profit-making agricultural enterprise shall not be considered to be land actively devoted to agriculture.

The intent of the program is to encourage landowners to use their land to produce a marketable product for public consumption. For example, an owner may produce fruits and nuts from trees or graze their cattle on the grass or hay growing on the land. If the land must lie fallow for a period of time to improve future growth of crops or grazing ground and is in a government-sponsored program for this purpose, this land may be included even though it may not be producing a marketable product at the current time.

ACREAGE REQUIREMENTS:

  • If the total area of such land, including the home site, is more than five contiguous acres (may be a group of separately assessed parcels with common boundaries), the owner may make initial application for the program. To continue the agricultural classification in future years, the owner must then ensure that the land continues to be devoted to agricultural use or show that it has been placed or continues to be in a crop retirement or rotation program.
  • If the total area of such land is five acres or less, the owner may make initial application and must show that the land was actively devoted to agriculture during the last three growing seasons and:
  • Agriculturally produces for sale or home consumption the equivalent of 15% or more of the owners’ or lessees’ annual gross income; or Agriculturally produced gross revenues in the immediately preceding year of $1000 or more, including net income per sale of livestock. When the area is five acres or less, such land shall be presumed to be non-agricultural land until established that these requirements have been met. The landowner must provide proof of these minimum incomes each year for the land to remain in qualification.

APPLICATION DEADLINE: Regardless of the total acreage of the agricultural land, initial application must be made in the Assessor’s office by March 15 of the year in which the owner is seeking the agricultural classification on the land. For land that is five (5.0) acres or less in size, the landowner must provide proof of income (from the year before) by March 15 each year.

VALUATION OF AGRICULTURAL LAND: When property is accepted into the agricultural program, it is classified as dry cropland, irrigated cropland, dry grazing, or irrigated grazing. There are a number of different assessment rates that apply to the land according to its ability to produce crops or grazing grasses. The value is calculated by multiplying the acres in the program by one of these rates, which are lower than the per acre rates for full market value, to obtain the taxable value. These rates are based on the income approach (potential income from the land), are provided by the State Tax Commission, and change each year. This program does not provide a true exemption but a reclassification according to the land’s agricultural use.

LENGTH OF THE PROGRAM: The land remains in the program for as long as a landowner actively manages it as agricultural land, whether or not it produces crops or is in rotation. When land is removed from this program, it is then assessed at full market value. The landowner is not required to pay back taxes on the difference in value between full market value and the lower taxable values placed on the land while it was in the program.

YIELD TAX: If the grazing ground is timbered or there are small areas of timbered ground included in the acres classified as cropland, the landowner will be required to pay a 3% yield tax on timber harvested and delivered to a mill. The agricultural rates per acre do not account for potential income from the trees. The total taxable value depends upon the species of trees and the quantity harvested (by the thousand board feet).

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