106 North Street West, Ripley WV 25271
Important Dates To Remember
July 1 - Property is
assessed to the owner of record on July 1 for real
estate and personal property.
Applications for Farm Use, Managed Timber, and
Homestead Exemption can begin to be accepted.
September 1 - WV Farm
Use Application due in Assessor's Office.
Application for Managed Timberland due at the
State Tax Department in Charleston.
First half taxes due with a 2 1/2% discount
in effect. New farm decals are to
be on vehicles. Business Personal
Property Returns are due.
October 1 - Personal
Property Assessment Returns due in Assessor's
Office. Dogs tags must be purchased from the
Assessor's Office by October 1. Mobile Home Park
owners' lists due in the Assessor's Office.
December 1 - Homestead
Exemption application period ends.
- Appeals to the Assessor on value must be
February - Board of
Equalization and Review meets to hear appeals of
assessed value. Appointments are required and must
be made with the County Commission office.
March 1 - Second half
taxes are due with a 2 1/2% discount in effect.
- The Sheriff's Office is required by law to
mail property tax tickets.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Do Assessed and
Appraised Value Mean?
Assessed value refers to 60
percent of market or appraised value and this is the
amount upon which tax levy rates are extended to
yield property tax amounts.
Appraised value is the same as fair market value.
What is Market Value?
It is the most probable
selling price of a piece of property between a
willing seller and a willing and knowledgeable
buyer, that are unrelated and assuming the property
has had adequate time for marketing.
What Types of Taxable
Real Estate and Personal
Property are taxable properties in West Virginia.
Real Estate includes all land and
improvements thereon (less all applicable exemptions
such as farm use, homestead, managed timber, etc.).
Personal Property primarily consists of
vehicles and mobile homes, boats, campers, trailers,
If My Tax Ticket Doesn't Have
My Name, Do I Have To Pay for It?
This issue is commonly
referred to as "pro-ration of property taxes"
between a seller and a buyer.
This is one of the most confusing issues inherent in
real estate transactions. From a
strict interpretation of WV Code, it is always the
legal responsibility of the person in whose name the
property was assessed to pay the entire amount of
yearly taxes. From a practical
standpoint, things are not that simple.
The only provision for enforcement of real
estate property tax collection is for the property
itself to stand good for the taxes.
What happens is, once the seller has sold the
property, it could be another year before the
property is transferred out of his/her name to the
new owner. The Assessor's Office only transfers
property according to owners of record on July 1 of
each year. f the seller does not
pay the taxes, it's not their property that the
Sheriff sells a tax lien upon during the annual
delinquency sale, because the seller no longer owns
the property. This presents a
problem for the new owner because they are the ones
who now own the property and it is in their interest
to see that the tax ticket is paid.
In many cases when a property sale is being
closed, the attorney or bank loan officer if either
is used, will make consideration for some form of
pro-ration for the following year's tax ticket.
Individuals who do not use an attorney or a
bank to close a real estate transaction need to be
extremely careful about what was agreed upon.
Buyers should be aware of this issue prior to
closing. There is no set formula or
method for this however, most Jackson County
attorneys and banks pro-rate taxes on a calendar
year basis. Neither the Assessor
nor the Sheriff have any statutory authority to
advise buyers and sellers how to pro-rate real
estate taxes. (WV Code: 11-3-1,
11-3-8, 11-4-6, 11-5-3, 11-6G-16)
What if My House Was Under
Construction on July 1?
In accordance with WV Code
11-4-11, if buildings are not completed to the point
of occupancy, as of the July 1 assessment date,
State law provides that the cost of materials be
entered in the Personal Property Books and assessed
to the owner as such. The
amount to be reported by the taxpayer should include
cost of materials only, no labor.
In addition, WV Code 11-3-3a states that whenever
any property owner has spent more than $1,000 in
improvements to real property, they are to report
this information to the Assessor's Office within 60
days after the commencement of the improvements.
If A Field
Deputy Does Not Visit My House, Do I Have To Be
According to WV Code 11-5-4, every person required
by law to list personal property for taxation shall
list the tangible personal property in the tax
district wherein it is on July 1.
Even though this office still utilizes summer field
deputies to canvass door-to-door during the months
of July, August, September, and part of October,
this is done as a courtesy only.
Jackson County is one of the very few West Virginia
counties still providing this service.
It is the responsibility of each tax payer to
report to the Assessor each summer.
How Are Motor Vehicles Valued
WV Code 17A-3-3a prescribes
that all County Assessors appraise vehicle values by
using a nationally accepted used car guide.
The National Automobile Dealers Association's
(NADA) book of values is currently being used.
Of the three values that appear in the book
for each vehicle, "retail," "trade-in," and "loan"
value, the Tax Department requires that our office
use only the lowest value or the "loan" value to
assess vehicles. The Assessor's
Office enters the vehicle's serial or identification
number (VIN) in the State Computer network.
The Tax Department personal property system
then recognizes the VIN and assigns the appropriate
NADA loan value for that vehicle and then applies 60
percent of that value against the levy rate to
determine the taxes for that vehicle.
If your car has mileage in excess of 100,000
miles, be sure to report this with your personal
How Do I Obtain a Farm Use
Permit for a Farm Vehicle?
WV Code 17A-3-2 is the
section of State law that deals with farm use
vehicles. Certain restrictions
apply such as the painting of 10" letters on the
sides of the vehicle stating "FARM USE."
The vehicle cannot be driven between dusk to
dawn hours nor can it be driven beyond a 25-mile
limit. Liability insurance is
still required for any vehicle driven on public
highways in West Virginia. Annual
inspection stickers are also required.
Permits are obtained in the Assessor's Office
at a cost of $2.00.
How Can I See What My
Neighbor's Property Values Are?
The Real Estate and Personal
Property Books are always available for public
inspection in the Jackson County Assessor's Office
and are categorized by tax district.
Locate your tax district, which is stated on
the top right portion of your tax tickets, and
examine the current book for that district.
Property owners are listed in alphabetical
order with the assessed values listed.
The assessed value is 60 percent of the
appraised value, but keep in mind your neighbor may
be receiving homestead or farm use exemption and you
may not. The West Virginia State
Tax Department uses regression analysis and other
statistical methods to assist assessors in
equalizing values. County
assessors are closely monitored each year by the
State Tax Department.
Are Churches and Non-Profit
Agencies Taxed for Real and Personal Property?
The West Virginia State
Constitution requires that ALL PROPERTY be assessed
at it's true and actual value unless specifically
exempt by law. Exempt status is
based upon use, not ownership. If
a property is not being used for an exempt purpose
(worship) then it is still taxable.
Vacant property is not considered exempt.
Personal property such as church buses and
vans are exempt as long as these vehicles are used
for church purposes. Fraternal
organizations are also exempt as long as they do not
make a profit. One of the ways an
organization can document non-profit status, is to
apply under section 501-c of the Internal Revenue
Code. Contact the IRS for details
and request form 1023.
How Does the Assessor Value
Three methods are available:
Cost Approach - First, the
value of the land is estimated, as if vacant. The
Assessor than adds the amount it would take to
replace your structure with one of similar utility,
including current costs of materials and labor,
profit, overhead, permit fees, and the like. If your
structure is not new, the Assessor then approximates
depreciation from all causes, and subtracts that
from the calculation of replacement cost.
Market (sales comparison)
Approach - Your property is evaluated based on
comparable properties that have recently sold, and
adjusted for differences, such as a garage, finished
basement, or better location. Where there are
frequent sales and similarities in properties, this
can be the most reliable approach for residential
Income Approach - This
approach works well for apartments, shopping centers
and office buildings. The Assessor estimates
potential gross income from rentals, then subtracts
an amount for vacancies and operating expenses. The
amount of net income is then converted to a value
for the property, using a process called
How Often is Property
Reassessed In Jackson County?
According to current State
law, the Assessor is required to physically visit
each parcel of real estate at least once every three
years. This process is known as a
tri-annual update. In addition,
based upon sales information recorded with the
County Clerk, and statistical studies, the Assessor
is required to maintain market values each year.
If No Improvements Have Been
Made to May Property, Why Should the Assessed Value
Over time market value
changes even if no improvements are made to the
property. Many people sell their homes for much more
than they paid for them years earlier. WV State Code
requires that property be reviewed every three (3)
years to maintain realistic market values and treat
all taxpayers fairly.
Will I Be Notified If There
Is an Increase in My Assessment?
The Assessor is required by
WV Code to notify owners of any increase in the
valuation of real property that is 10 percent or
greater in January of each year.
What If I Disagree With My
You should first contact the
Assessor's Office so that we can verify that our
information concerning your property is accurate.
Each parcel of real estate has what is known
as a property record card. This
is where basic information for your property is
maintained by the Assessor's office.
If this information is correct, the Assessor
must assume your property appraisal is also correct.
If you have a recent independent fee
appraisal of your property stating a different
value, please bring that to the Assessor's Office.
If you still disagree with your appraisal,
you should contact the County Commission and
schedule an appointment when the Commissioners
convene as a Board of Equalization and Review during
February of each year. If you
disagree with the decision rendered by the Board of
Equalization and Review, an appeal can then be made
to the Circuit Court.
Jackson County Assessor's Office 106 North
Street West Ripley, WV 25271 304-373-2240