By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
County property values fall for fifth consecutive year
Placeholder Image

The taxable value of Stanislaus County real estate has declined nearly $500 million from a year ago, according to the county assessor’s office, down 1.45 percent.

That translates into less property tax revenues for local governments, though the decline is the smallest seen in years.

“Although the 2012-13 assessment roll is down once again over the previous year, it will produce approximately $335 million in revenue to be shared by public schools, the county, cities and special districts,” said Stanislaus County Assessor Dave Cogdill.

The total county assessment roll, tallying more than 178,500 units of real property and business assessments, amounts to $33.5 billion this year.

The amount marks the fifth consecutive year of decline, from a high of $43.0 billion in 2007-2008, and places the county assessment roll roughly equivalent to 2005-2006. The decline is, however, the smallest seen since the 2007-2008 high.

Countywide, the value of land slightly increased – 0.64 percent, or $64 million. But the value of improvements fell, down 1.96 percent, or $504 million.

In Turlock, taxable values fell 3.75 percent in total, or $171 million. Patterson was the only Stanislaus County city to post an increase in taxable value – 2.45 percent, or $28 million – and Waterford saw the sharpest percentage of decline, down 5.03 percent or $15 million.

The assessed values reflect the ongoing downturn in the real estate market, according to Cogdill.

Per 1978’s Proposition 13, the assessor establishes a taxable value for all property as of the date of change in ownership. The base value receives an annual inflation adjustment which may not exceed 2 percent, but if market value is below the adjusted base value then the true market value is assessed.

According to Cogdill, over 98,500 Stanislaus County properties – 59.1 percent – received a lower assessed value following review. Stanislaus County had the highest percentage of properties receiving lower assessed values of any California county.

Property owners will only be notified of changes in assessed values electronically, a move adopted in 2011 to save the county $25,000 annually. Valuation information is available online at

Taxpayers with questions can call 525-6461 or visit the Assessor’s Office at 1010 10th St., 2nd Floor, Suite 2400, Modesto, from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. Assessments can be appealed from July 2 through Nov. 30; appeal forms are available online at or at the Clerk of the Assessment Appeals Board at 1010 10th Street, 6th Floor, Suite 6700, Modesto.

“Our goal is to provide the taxpayer courteous service and do our best to help them understand the complexities of the property tax process,” Cogdill said.