Frequently Asked Questions
How can I change my mailing address for my property tax statement?
Please complete this address change form or call our office at 360-416-1750.
When are property taxes due?
Property taxes are due as soon as the bills are certified and mailed. State law allows for payments of first installment to be received with a postmark date all the way up to April 30th each year. If the taxpayer chooses to pay the year in full, that payment can also be made through April 30th each year. If the taxpayer chooses to pay in two installments, the second payment can be made all the way through October 31st. After these two dates, interest and penalties can accumulate. If the final pay dates fall on a holiday or weekend then taxes become due on the next business day. See RCW 84.56.020.
What happens if I can’t pay my taxes on time?
Interest accrues at 1% on the full tax year due on the first of each month for any tax year past due. June 1st there is also a 3% penalty charge on the current tax year only. December 1st there is also an 8% penalty charge on the current tax year only. Exceptions are allowed by law if the taxpayer is in active military duty overseas at the time of the due date, if the taxpayer’s spouse or parents have passed away and it is the primary residence, or if there was an error on the part of the county. Please contact our office at 360-416-1750 to see if these exceptions might fit your situation or to obtain current amounts due. If any property tax year becomes three years delinquent, the real property is at risk of foreclosure.
If I pay the wrong amount on my taxes, what will happen?
We will apply the payment as we are able and send a balance due billing statement to you.
What do I do if I want to pay my taxes early?
Property taxes cannot be paid until the tax roll has been certified per Washington State Law.
Do you bill my mortgage lender or escrow company for my property taxes?
No. It is the responsibility of the property owner to make sure another entity is paying their taxes. Skagit County does not track who has a mortgage lender or escrow company. These third-party companies will obtain your tax information online, by calling our office, or by requesting a data file to pay the parcels they are contracted to pay. Property owners will get the paper copy of the bill in February each year regardless of whether a third-party pays the taxes.
What happens if I pay my taxes and another entity also pays my taxes?
The first payment received will be posted to your parcel(s) and then the second payment received will be posted to any balance remaining due for the year before any refund will be issued.
How can I get a deduction or exemption on my property taxes?
There are several programs of this nature that can be applied for through the Skagit County Assessor. Please contact their office at 360-416-1780 for more information.
How do I request a tax refund?
Taxpayers who have paid in error, or overpaid their taxes due to a tax adjustment, must make a written request for a refund. Interest on refunds accrues from the date taxes were overpaid and is included in the amount to be refunded, unless refund is made within 60 days of payment.
What if I want to pay my property taxes under protest?
Please see this publication from the Washington State Department of Revenue for more information: Paying Your Property Taxes Under Protest.
Can I get information on how the county invests public funds?
Yes. All funds on deposit with the Treasurer are invested with the goal in mind of maximizing funds while they are not needed for immediate expenditure. All funds are invested according to state statutes and the Skagit County Investment Policy. Funds are invested in a diversified portfolio of securities in order to reduce overall risk while attaining market average rates of return. No investment purchases are made outside the State of Washington. Skagit County utilizes the services of a third-party custodian who holds investment documents while they are invested, with the exception of CDs and transactions with the Washington State Local Government Investment Pool. Skagit County utilizes a short list of brokers/dealers who must qualify to bid through a selection process. See the following for more information: Skagit County Debt Policy and Skagit County Investment Policy. Specific information can be obtained by contacting our office at 360-416-1750.
Why is the County Treasurer an elected position?
An elected position provides independence in managing public monies as well as a check and balance between the Clerk, Assessor, Auditor and Commissioners. The Treasurer also serves other local government entities like schools, ports, fire districts, etc. and is accountable directly to the citizens