Under State law (Proposition 13), real property is reappraised only when a change-in-ownership occurs, or upon completion of new construction. Except for these two instances, property assessments cannot be increased by more than 2% annually, based on the California Consumer Price Index. The property tax rate is 1% plus any voter approved bonds, fees, or special charges.
When a sale or transfer occurs, the Assessor's Office receives a copy of the deed and determines if a reappraisal is required under State law. If it is required, an appraisal is made to determine the new market value of the property. The owner is then notified of the new assessment and has the right to appeal the value.
The transfer of property between husband and wife does not require a reappraisal for property tax purposes. This includes transfers resulting from divorce or death. In addition, a refinancing will not cause a reappraisal.