FAQS

General Information
WHAT IS A HOMESTEAD EXEMPTION?

A homestead exemption is defined as a single-family owner-occupied dwelling and the land thereto, not exceeding 160 acres. The property owner may be entitled to a homestead exemption if he or she owns a single-family residence and occupies it as their primary residence on the first day of the tax year for which they are applying. There are several different types of exemptions a home owner can claim in the State of Alabama. Applications for homestead exemptions can be filed in the Revenue Commission office. For more information regarding homestead exemptions, call 251-578-1890.

WILL MY TAXES GO UP EVERY YEAR?

There are two reasons for your property taxes to increase: (1) a tax rate (millage) increase, or (2) an increase in the appraised value of the property. The first reason, a tax rate increase, would have to come from a vote of the citizens or by the taxing authority (County Commission) to increase (or decrease) the millage rate. The second situation, involving an increase in the appraised value, would come from a court ordered re-appraisal or from an “economically-based” increase in the market value of properties in the county, resulting in an increase in the appraised value.

WHEN ARE MY PROPERTY TAXES DUE?

Property taxes are due October 1, and are delinquent after December 31.

IF I DIDN’T RECEIVE A TAX STATEMENT, DO I HAVE TO PAY THE TAXES?

The County Revenue Commissioner is not required to mail tax notices and does so only as a courtesy to the taxpayer. You are responsible for the payment of taxes whether you receive a statement or not.

WHAT SHOULD I DO WHEN I PURCHASE PROPERTY?

If you have purchased new property please take the following steps to ensure your property is properly assessed and you receive your proper exemptions:

* Tax bills for property purchased during the year will usually be in the previous owner’s name, due to taxes being assessed a year in arrears (the year prior). The current property owner is responsible for paying taxes on all property, regardless of who the bill is addressed.

WHAT IS THE TIMETABLE FOR PROPERTY TAXES?
I AM OVER 65. DO I HAVE TO PAY PROPERTY TAXES?

If you are over 65 years of age, or permanent and totally disabled (regardless of age), or blind (regardless of age), you are exempt from the state portion of property tax. County taxes may still be due. Please contact your local taxing official to claim your homestead exemption.

AT WHAT POINT WILL MY TAX DELINQUENT PROPERTY BE “SOLD” FOR TAXES?

A public tax auction is held every year usually the first Monday in May. Everything that hasn’t been paid prior will be auctioned off to the highest bidder.

DO I HAVE THE OPTION TO REDEEM MY TAX DELINQUENT PROPERTY?

Yes. You may redeem your property within 3 years of sale by paying all taxes, interest, fees, and penalties at the rate of 12% per annum.

CAN I GET A DEED TO THE TAX DELINQUENT PROPERTY IF I PAY THE TAXES?

No. Paying taxes on property does not constitute ownership. State law allows taxes to be paid by persons other than the owner(s).

MUST I PAY DELINQUENT TAXES IF I DID NOT OWN THE PROPERTY IN DELINQUENT YEARS?

Yes. The taxes follow the property. The tax liability must be satisfied by the property owner whether the taxes were incurred prior to current ownership. Never purchase property before having a title opinion from a reputable source. It is advisable to consult a competent attorney regarding your contemplated purchase of tax delinquent property.

Appraisal and Mapping
I AM OVER 65. DO I HAVE TO PAY PROPERTY TAXES?

If you are over 65 years of age, or permanent and totally disabled (regardless of age), or blind (regardless of age), you are exempt from the state portion of property tax. County taxes may still be due. Please contact your local taxing official to claim your homestead exemption.

WHAT SHOULD I DO IF I ADD OR REMOVE IMPROVEMENTS?

The law requires that owners, or their agent, must visit the Revenue Commissioner’s Office no later than December 31 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 1 of that year. Examples of improvements that should be reported 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.

WHAT CAN I DO IF I DO NOT AGREE WITH THE VALUE ON MY PROPERTY?

The Code of Alabama 1975, Sections 40-3-20, 40-3-24, and 40-3-25 detail the appeals process. If you believe your property value is too high, you may file a written protest with the County Board of Equalization (BOE). Property owners are given 30 days to file an appeal after receiving written notice of change in valuation. Upon your appeal, you will be contacted by a county appraiser to review your valuation. If, after this review, you are still not satisfied with your valuation, a hearing will be set for you to formally meet with the BOE to present information you believe justifies a change in value. Following this hearing, you will be notified of the decision of the Board of Equalization. The Code of Alabama 1975, Section 40-7-71 states that any property owner may appeal from the finding of the county board of equalization. Such appeal shall be to the Circuit Court of the county where the property is located. Appeals may be made to Circuit Court within 30 days from the date the Board of Equalization notified you of their decision. In order to preserve your right to carry the appeal to Circuit Court, taxes must be paid by December 31 or a bond filed in Circuit Court in double the amount of taxes due.

WHAT IS A TAX MAP?

Continuously. Changes are received by the Mapping Department daily. These changes usually result from deeds being assessed in the Appraisal Department and/or recorded in the Probate Office. Other updates come from newly recorded subdivision plats, right-of-way surveys, etc.

HOW OFTEN ARE TAX MAPS UPDATED?

The law requires that owners, or their agent, must visit the Revenue Commissioner’s Office no later than December 31 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 1 of that year. Examples of improvements that should be reported 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.

WHAT IS THE ‘PARCEL IDENTIFICATION NUMBER’?

This 16 digit number uniquely identifies every piece of property within the county for tax purposes. The parcel id number is broken down as follows:

Example: 21-16-09-31-3-004-019.003

HOW DO I PURCHASE A PLAT BOOK?

Plat books are available for purchase in the County Commission Office. Please call 251-578-2095 for more information.

HOW MUCH IS THE SUBSCRIPTION TO THE CONECUH COUNTY GIS SITE?

The cost for a subscription to the Alabama GIS site is $200 per year. The billing cycle is June 1-May 31 and the cost of the subscription is prorated according to the date of the initial subscription. Each May, subscribers are given the option to renew their subscription for the full amount of $200.

Business Personal Property
WHAT IS PERSONAL PROPERTY?

Personal Property is property not permanently affixed to or part of the real property, such as furniture, fixtures, and/or equipment. Everything that is not real estate is personal property.

WHO IS REQUIRED TO REPORT PERSONAL PROPERTY?

Every individual, firm, or corporation owning business personal property in Alabama on October 1 of each year is required to report personal property. Any individual, firm, or corporation owning aircraft based in Alabama, regardless of use, and any individual firm or corporation that purchases a permanent trailer tag for a tractor trailer, truck trailer, or semi-trailer.

WHEN SHOULD PERSONAL PROPERTY BE REPORTED?

A complete itemized listing of all personal property owned on October 1 must be provided to the local assessing official in the taxing jurisdiction in which the property is located. This list must be submitted between October 1 and December 31 of each year to avoid penalty. The list must include a description of the property along with its acquisition date and cost.

I DID NOT RECEIVE A BUSINESS PERSONAL PROPERTY RETURN FORM BY MAIL. WHERE CAN I GET ONE?

You may contact your local to receive a form by mail or fax. Or, you may download the Business Personal Property Return Form.

WHAT ARE EXAMPLES OF THE ITEMS I LIST ON THE RETURN?

All furniture and fixtures as well as machinery and equipment purchased for and used by the business.

AM I REQUIRED TO FILL OUT AND RETURN THE BUSINESS PERSONAL PROPERTY RETURN FORM EVERY YEAR EVEN THOUGH MY EQUIPMENT IS THE SAMES AS LAST YEAR?

Yes, the local assessing official must receive a form every year no later than December 31 to report equipment that is owned and located in the county as of October 1.

MOST OF MY BUSINESS EQUIPMENT HAS BEEN FULLY DEPRECIATED ON MY INCOME TAX RETURN; DO I STILL LIST THESE ITEMS ON THE BUSINESS PERSONAL PROPERTY RETURN?

Yes, all assets owned as of the October 1 lien date must be reported with acquisition dates and acquisition costs. The depreciation schedule used in preparing income tax returns may be used. However, the depreciation schedule must be adjusted for additions and deletions so that it will contain property owned by the business on the October 1 lien date. Also, assets which are expensed rather than capitalized for income tax purposes and are not included on the depreciation schedule must be added to the taxpayer’s listing so that all personal property is reported.

HOW DOES THE REVENUE COMMISSIONERS’S OFFICE VALUE MY BUSINESS PERSONAL PROPERTY?

The Property Tax Division of the Alabama Department of Revenue has established procedures in the Alabama Personal Property Appraisal Manual for determining market value and the assessed value of personal property. All counties in the state of Alabama use this manual to achieve uniformity. The type of business, type of equipment, acquisition year, and acquisition date are all used in figuring values. For example, computer equipment depreciates more quickly than items of office furniture. Business Personal Property falls into Class II property and is assessed at 20% of its market value.

WHAT IF I FAIL TO COMPLY WITH THE LAW?

If you fail to file a listing of your Business Personal Property, a field review will be conducted in accordance with the provisions of Title 40 of the Code of Alabama 1975. During this field review, a listing will be made of your business personal property and this property will be assessed to you.

WHEN WILL I RECEIVE A TAX BILL TO PAY THE AD VALOREM TAXES ON MY BUSINESS EQUIPMENT?

You will receive a tax bill the following October 1st, just like ad valorem taxes on real property. For instance, what you own this October 1 you will receive a tax bill for those items the next October 1.

I ALREADY PAID TAXES ON MY BUSINESS EQUIPMENT WHEN I PURCHASED THE ITEMS. WHY AM I BEING TAXED AGAIN?

When you purchased the equipment you paid sales tax and this is ad valorem tax or “ownership” tax that is solely based upon value. It is based neither upon the ability of the owner to pay nor upon the amount for which the property last sold.

CAN MY BUSINESS BE AUDITED BY THE REVENUE COMMISSIONER?

Yes, and it will be. All counties are currently following the Alabama Department of Revenue guidelines to regularly audit businesses which have personal property.

Mobile Homes
WHEN IS MY REGISTRATION DUE ON MY MANUFACTURED HOME?

Manufactured Home registration is due October 1, and delinquent November 30. Manufactured home owners have 30 days after they purchase a manufactured home or 30 days after it enters into the state to register their manufactured home.

HOW MUCH IS THE REGISTRATION ON A MANUFACTURED HOME?

The base registration fee is $24.00 for a Single-Wide and $48.00 for a Double-Wide or larger which is used for residential purposes. If the home is used for commercial purposes, these amounts are $48.00 for Single-Wide and $96.00 for a Double-Wide or larger.

ARE THERE OTHER FEES OR COSTS TO MY MANUFACTURED HOME REGISTRATION?

Possibly. Sales tax could be due if it was not paid when the home was purchased. Some local fees may also apply such as garbage, fire, etc. Delinquent fees are added if the manufactured home is not registered in a timely manner.

AM I ENTITLED TO A MANUFACTURED HOME EXEMPTION BASED ON AGE?

Yes. All manufactured home owners who are over the age of 65 shall be exempt from payment of the registration fee on their owner-occupied manufactured home. However, the owner will be subject to the payment of the $5 issuance fee.

AM I REQUIRED TO DISPLAY THE REGISTRATION DECAL ON MY MANUFACTURED HOME?

Yes. The manufactured home owner shall immediately attach the decal to the manufactured home. At all times thereafter, the decal should be displayed at eye level on the outside finish of the manufactured home for which the decal was issued. The decal shall be located one foot from the right corner on the side facing the street so as to be clearly visible from the street.