Assessor's Office

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Assessor's Office

Assessor: David M. Thomas

Frequently Asked Questions of the Assessor
(FAQ's)

  1. Does the Skagit County Appraiser have the right to enter my private property?
  2. How is the valuation of my property determined?
  3. What should I do if I feel my property has been unfairly valued?
  4. Are taxes the same throughout the county?
  5. Why does this difference exist?
  6. How do I protest or appeal the value placed on my property?
  7. How do I know my property has been assessed?
  8. What information is available to me?
  9. What kind of property is taxable?
  10. What if my property is destroyed?



Does the Skagit County Appraiser have the right to enter my private property?

The answer is provided in RCW 84.40.025 “For the purpose of assessment and valuation of all taxable property in each county, any real or personal property in each county shall be subject to visitation, investigation, examination, discovery, and listing at any reasonable time by the county assessor of the county or by any employee thereof designated for this purpose by the assessor. In any case of refusal to such access, the assessor shall request assistance from the department of revenue which may invoke the power granted by chapter 84.08 RCW.”

Appraisers do not need internal access but they do need access to all sides of the building; therefore they may enter the backyard even on fenced properties.

When working neighborhoods the appraiser may be on foot to reduce mileage and fuel costs. They will be carrying county issued ID. If you have a doubt, please call the Assessor main line at 360-416-1780, we can describe the appraiser working your neighborhood that day.

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How is the valuation of my property determined?

The Assessor estimates the market value using approved, professional appraisal methods and manuals.

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What should I do if I feel my property has been unfairly valued?

Contact the Assessor's Office if you feel that your property is valued at more than fair market value. If the Assessor and you cannot agree on a satisfactory valuation, you have the right to appear before the Skagit County Board of Equalization.

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Are taxes the same throughout the county?

No, different sections of the county may show quite a difference in taxes on the same kind of property

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Why does this difference exist?

It is due to the amount of the budget submitted to the County Assessor by the various taxing district commissioners and board members. The County Assessor then certifies to the County Commissioners the amount of levy needed to produce the same in property tax. The County Commissioners then adopt a Resolution for Certification of taxes to the County Treasurer and State of Washington. If all of these taxing districts levy to the maximum amount by law, then the difference is due to the 101% limit or to special levies and bond issues voted by the people.

Levy Tax
City Rate Amount
Anacortes 11.2238 $1,122
Burlington 13.1684 $1,317
Concrete 14.4415 $1,444
Hamilton 14.0178 $1,402
LaConner 13.0539 $1,305
Lyman 12.6611 $1,266
Mount Vernon 14.4544 $1,445
Mount Vernon 14.5210 $1,452
Mount Vernon 14.0488 $1,405
Mount Vernon 14.9266 $1,493
Sedro Woolley 14.2463 $1,425

For example, if we have appraised a residence in any town or city in Skagit County at $100,000, the amount of property tax for 1999 is as shown in the table. The reasons for the four different sub-areas in Mount Vernon have to do with part of the city being in Hospital District 304 (UGH) and part in Hospital District 1 (SVH, which doesn't levy a property tax) and some of the most recent & eastern annexes being in the Sedro Woolley School District.

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How do I protest or appeal the value placed on my property?

You may talk to the Assessor any time you feel an error has been made in valuing your property. You may also appeal your appraised value to the Skagit County Board of Equalization by July 1 of the assessment year or within 30 days of notice, whichever is later. If you do not agree with the County Board's decision, you may appeal to the State Board of Tax Appeals. However, you must file with the State Board within thirty days of the County Board's ruling and must present proof to the Board that the Assessor has erred in his appraisal. The information you present to the Board should show the pertinent information that describes the difference between the Assessor's value and what you feel is the value of your property. A property owner does not need an attorney to talk to the Assessor or appeal to the County Board of Equalization or the State Board of Tax Appeals.

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How do I know my property has been assessed?

RCW 84.41.041 requires the Assessor to physically inspect and value all real property at least once every six years. During the intervals between the six-year physical inspections of real property, the valuation may only be adjusted to its current true and fair market value based upon new construction, change of use or statistical reevaluations based on the Department of Revenue approved annual reevaluation program. At the completion of any reassessment, property owners are notified of the results by a valuation change notice mailed to the taxpayer.

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What information is available to me?

All assessment records maintained by the Assessor's Office are public and are open for inspection during regular office hours (8:30 am - 4:30 PM Monday through Friday) except for confidential income reports and personal property affidavit listings. County assistance is available to help you obtain the information you desire.

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What kind of property is taxable?

Under Washington State law, two types of property can be assessed and taxed. The first is real property, which is land and improvements, made to that land. The second type is personal property. As defined by law, these properties include: agricultural machinery and equipment,

  • commercial machinery and equipment,
  • furniture,
  • tools,
  • supplies and materials not held for sale, and
  • all other items of personal property except those, which may be exempted from taxation by law, such as personal household and hobby items.

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  • What if my property is destroyed?

    All taxpayers have the right to a reduction in the assessed value of destroyed property . The assessor's office has forms to complete for property that has been destroyed in whole or part in the last three years.

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