Owning property comes with a unique sense of freedom and pride. Whether you enjoy gardening, landscaping, or simply maintaining a tidy lawn, your property is a reflection of your hard work and dedication. As a responsible property owner, it is important to understand the tax assessment process and how your tax dollars contribute to the community. In this article, we will break down the information provided in your tax assessment, explain how to access public property data, and discuss how Pickens County makes the most of your tax dollars.
What is a Tax Assessment?
A tax assessment is a document that provides information about the value of your property and estimates the taxes you will owe at the end of the year. It is important to note that the tax assessment is not a bill but rather serves as a tool for informational purposes. The assessment includes details about your property’s value, your rights to appeal the assessment, and important deadlines.
Understanding the Assessment
The tax assessment consists of three main sections: A, B, and C.
Section A: Appraised and Assessed Value
Section A of the assessment explains that your final tax bill will be based on the appraised and assessed value of your property. If you disagree with the assessed value, you have the right to file a written appeal to the County Board of Assessors within 45 days of receiving your assessment notice. The Tax Assessor’s Office, located in Suite 121 of the County Administration Building, will gladly explain how your assessment was reached.
Section B: Property Information
Section B lists your tax district, tax account number, and reflects your property size and improvement information. To access detailed property information, including photos, structures, sketches, and aerial photography, you can visit qpublic.net/ga/pickens. This website provides up-to-date public information for all parcels within the county and even allows you to search sales records with specific filters. The Contact tab on the homepage provides a directory of all employees in the Appraiser’s Office, making it easier for you to find the right staff member for assistance.
Section C: Exemptions and Estimated Tax Bill
Section C displays a breakdown of your property’s exemptions and estimated tax bill based on the millage rate set by the tax authorities within the county. In Pickens County, the primary tax authorities are the Board of Commissioners and the Board of Education. If you live within the limits of an incorporated city, such as Jasper, their millage rates will be displayed as well. Millage rates represent a percentage of the assessed property value and are determined independently by each tax authority. The millage rates are put forward to supplement the maintenance and operations costs of each authority.
The Importance of Taxes in the Community
Property taxes are an essential part of funding well-functioning schools and strong public services, which ultimately contribute to the value of your home. Despite the growing population and new development in Pickens County, tax rates have remained stable and, in fact, have been decreasing over the last five years. The county is committed to maintaining a transparent process and is required by Georgia law to hold public hearings if there is ever a need to increase millage rates.
Additional Resources and Support
If you have further questions about property taxes or need assistance, Pickens County’s website (pickenscountyga.gov) provides detailed articles that explain everything you need to know. These articles cover topics such as tax calculations, exemption information, and the appeals process. On the website, you will also find contact information for the Tax Assessor’s Office, where trained staff members are available to answer your questions and provide personal service. You can reach the office by calling 706-253-8700 or by visiting Suite 121 at the County Administration Building.
Understanding your property taxes is an essential part of being a responsible property owner. By familiarizing yourself with the information on your tax assessment, accessing public property data, and staying informed about the tax process in Pickens County, you can make informed decisions and contribute to the community’s growth and development. Remember, your property is not just a place to call home, but also an investment in the future.