NOTICE TO PROPERTY OWNERS and OCCUPANTS: In accordance with Alabama Law (Section 40-7-74 and Section (40-2-11), please be advised that a member of the Mobile County Appraisal Staff may visit your property to review or update property information. The purpose of this visit may be in response to one or more of the following: a return was filed, an appeal was filed, recent improvements or additions were made to the property or a general review.
How can I get a copy of my deed
Deeds are usually recorded by the property owner, real estate agent, or closing attorney in the Mobile County Probate Court records department. If your deed was recorded, you may purchase a copy. For more information you can call the records department of the Mobile County Probate Court at 251-574-6000.
How is my property assessed?
Property assessment is based on the appraised Fair Market Value determined by this office. Each property is appraised according to information based on area sales, value associated with improvements located on the property and other guidelines set forth by the Alabama Department of Revenue.
After a Fair Market Value is established, the assessed value is determined. Assessed value is determined by your propertys classification and usage as of October 1 of each year.
- Class I Includes all Utility properties, 30% of the Fair Market Value of this property will be taxed.
- Class II Rental or any property that is not occupied by the owner. 20% of the Fair Market Value of the property is taxed.
- Class III Owner occupied single family properties. 10% of the Fair Market Value is taxed.
Example : The assessed value or the amount subject to property tax on a single family home owned and occupied by the owner with a fair market value of $100,000.00 would be $10,000.
I have added on to my house. Do I need to report anything?
All improvements to your property should be reported to the Revenue Commissioner’s Office in a timely manner. This can be done by providing our office with a description and value of improvement added. You may report and improvement at any of our office locations.
Improvements that are unreported may result in back charges and penalty.
What do I do if I add or remove improvements?
The law requires that owners, or their agent, must come to the Revenue Commissioner’s Office no later than December 31st to sign a new assessment officially reporting any improvements made to or any removal of structures or features from their property, on or before October 1st of that year.
Examples of improvements that are assessable would include new structures or additions, swimming pools, extensive repairs, remodeling, or renovations; adding a fireplace, extra bath, patio, deck, carport, garage, etc. However such things as re-roofing, minor repairs and painting,(normal maintenance type items), would not require a reassessment.
Generally speaking, any work done that would more than nominally increase the value of a property would constitute an assessable improvement.
What is property appraisal?
Mobile County has 209,097 separate parcels of land that must be individually appraised for tax purposes. Each parcel of land must be described on a property record card. Characteristics about land and building are listed and valued separately and become the basis for establishing fair market value. This information is found in the Revenue Commissioner’s Office. The Revenue Commissioner notifies the property owner and is responsible for collecting the correct tax for each parcel of land. You pay taxes at the end of the year.
The property I have purchased or sold is still in the previous owner’s name or my name.
Property transactions take place everyday throughout our county. Many properties are sold, purchased, or otherwise transferred daily in Mobile County through all manner of real estate transactions.
With over 200,000 parcels of real estate to appraise, assess, map, and tax no government office county or state has the staff or capability to monitor each of these transactions. Because of these constant changes in ownership, all property in Alabama is assessed according to ownership as of October 1 of each year.
This means that all property transferred after the deadline (October 1) remains in the previous or “owner of record’s” name for the remainder of that particular tax year. The new owner’s name will be transferred to the account the October 1 of the following year.
Please keep in mind that all records held by this office are for the sole purpose of assessing and collecting property taxes. The ownership of property is determined by a legal deed to the property.
What changes to my property should I report?
An improvement as defined by the Revenue Commissioner’s Office is any structure located on your property. This includes your home, detached garage, storage and utility buildings, or any free standing structure located within the boundaries of your property.
Other types of improvements include any completed construction that adds square footage and or value to your home such as additional rooms, decks, swimming pools, boat docks, covered/uncovered porches, sun rooms, carports, etc. that may or may not be attached to your home. All improvements must be reported to the Revenue Commissioner’s Office in a timely manner to avoid penalty.
It is not necessary to report painting, re-roofing, replacing siding, etc., or any routine maintenance made to the exterior of your home or structures assessed to your property. You are not required to report Improvements made to the interior of your home unless the square footage is affected.
If you have a question regarding a specific improvement, please contact our Assessing Department at 251-574-8530.
What do I need to do after I purchase property?
New property owners often rely on their title company, real estate agent or other representative to properly record and assess their property. The final responsibility is still yours, as the new owner, to see that all the necessary steps have been completed. The steps are:
- Record your deed in Probate Court.
- Assess the property in the Revenue Commissioner’s Office.
- Claim any exemption due you.
- Make sure all of this is done no later than December 31 for all property purchased on or before October 1, in order to receive a bill in your name for next year.
- If your mortgage company has agreed to pay your property taxes, a copy of the assessment sheet should be mailed to the company as soon as it is received. This will give them complete information to request a bill for your property.
- Report all address changes promptly.
What if my house is destroyed?
Unfortunately, some property owners experience damage or a total a loss of property due to fire, violent weather, or other catastrophic events. When damage occurs, you are required to report the loss to this office before October 1 of the year that the damage was caused so that the assessed value can be adjusted.
Damage reported after the October 1 deadline, will require proper documentation to adjust your assessed value.
If your property is damaged by fire, please provide our office with a copy of the Fire Report provided by the Mobile Fire Department (251-208-7484) if you live in the city or, your local Volunteer Fire Department if you live in the county.
To report a loss due to storm or other damage, you must provide our office with a copy of your insurance claim. This document must contain the date that the damage occurred and the loss amount.
If you are reporting a total loss of property, please be advised that any Homestead Exemption will be cancelled and the property reclassified as CLASS II.