The Title Consumer
Understanding Supplemental Property Taxes
Supplemental property taxes have been with us since July of 1983, but
you and your neighbors still may not know what they are, what they do,
and how they affect you and your property. To help you better understand
this confusing subject, below you will find answers to some
of the questions most commonly asked about supplemental real property
Q: When did this tax come into effect?
A: The Supplemental Real Property Tax Law was signed by the Governor
in July of 1983 and is part of an ambitious drive to aid California's
schools. This property tax revision is expected to produce over $300
million per year in revenue for schools.
Q: How will Supplemental Property Taxes affect me?
A: If you don't plan on buying new property or undertaking new
construction, this new tax will not affect you at all. But, if you
do wish to do either of the two, you will be required to pay a supplemental
property tax which will become a lien against your property as of the
date of ownership change or the date of completion of new construction.
Q: When and how will I be billed?
A: "When" is not easy to predict. You can be billed in
as few as three weeks, or it could take over six months. "When"
will depend on the individual county and the workload of the County
Assessor, the County Controller/Auditor and the County Tax Collector.
The assessor will appraise your property and advise you of the new
supplemental assessment amount. At that time, you will have the opportunity
to discuss your valuation, apply for a Homeowner's Exemption, and be
informed of your right to file, an Assessment Appeal. The county will
then calculate the amount of the supplemental tax and the tax collector
will mail you a supplemental tax bill. The supplemental tax bill will
identify, among other things, the following information: the amount
of the supplemental tax and the date on which the taxes will become
Q: Can I pay my Supplemental Tax Bill in installments?
A: All supplemental taxes on the secured roll are payable in two
installments. The taxes are due on the date the bill is mailed and
are delinquent on specified dates depending on the month the bill is
mailed as follows: (1) If the bill is mailed within the months of July
through October, the first installment shall become delinquent on December
10 of the same year. The second installment shall become delinquent
on April 10 of the next year. (2) If the bill is mailed within the
months of November through June, the first installment shall become
delinquent on the last day of the month following the month in which
the bill is mailed. The second installment shall become delinquent
on the last day of the fourth calendar month following the date the
first installment is delinquent.
Q: How will the amount of my bill be determined?
A: There is a formula to determine your tax bill. The total supplemental
assessment will be prorated based on the number of months remaining
until the end of the tax year, June 30.
Q: Can you tell me how the proration factor works?
A: The supplemental tax becomes effective on the first day of the
month following the month in which the change of ownership or completion
of new construction actually occurred. If the effective date is July
1, then there will be no supplemental assessment on the current tax
roll and the entire supplemental assessment will be made to the tax
roll being prepared which will then reflect the full cash value. In
the event the effective date is not on July 1, then you may wish to
contact your County Tax Assessor's office.
Q: Will my taxes be prorated in escrow?
A: No, unlike your ordinary annual taxes, the supplemental tax
is a one time tax which dates from the date you take ownership of your
property or complete the construction until the end of the tax year
on June 30. The obligation for this tax is entirely that of the property