The information in this web site is intended to aid you in understanding your rights and responsibilities relating to property tax in Columbia County. This site does not necessarily cover every aspect of property taxation and should not be relied upon as a legal source of information. There are many complex tax laws in Georgia, so if you don’t find the answers to your questions below, or, if you need clarification on information you find here, please contact us.
The Columbia County Tax Commissioner's Office should be contacted for more information on inquiries about billing and collection of property taxes. The phone number is (706) 261-8299 .
The Columbia County Board of Tax Assessor's Office should be contacted for more information on property values. The phone number for the Tax Assessor is (706) 312-7474 .
The Department of Revenue sponsors a web site where the annotated version of the Official Code of Georgia (O.C.G.A.) can be viewed.
Property tax is an ad valorem tax, which means according to value. Ad valorem tax, the tax collected by the tax commissioner, is based on the value of the taxable property in the county.
All real estate and personal property are taxable unless law has exempted the property. (O.C.G.A. 48-5-3) Real property is land and generally anything that is erected, growing or affixed to the land; personal property is everything that can be owned that is not real estate. Personal property typically consists of inventory and fixtures used in conducting business, boats, aircraft, farm machinery, motor vehicles and mobile homes. Your household property is not normally taxable.
The Board of Assessors has the responsibility of determining the value of property in Columbia County. Each year between January 1 and April 1 every property owner has the ability to declare a proposed value for their property. (O.C.G.A. 48-5-9) These values are declared in the manner of 'filing a return'. Returns for real estate are filed in the Tax Assessor's office and returns for personal property are filed with the Board of Assessors. The Board of Assessors will review your proposed value and if they disagree, an assessment notice with the Boards' value will be mailed to you.
Taxpayers may challenge an assessment by Columbia County Board of Tax Assessors by appealing to Columbia County Board of Equalization or to an arbitrator(s) within 45 days from the date of the assessment notice. Once the county board of equalization or the arbitrator(s) has rendered a decision, the taxpayer may continue their appeal to the superior court by mailing or filing with Columbia County Board of Tax Assessors a written notice wishing to continue the appeal.
Assessed value is defined as being 40% of the fair market value. Property in Georgia is taxed on the assessed value.
The tax rate, or millage rate, is set annually by the Columbia County Board of Commissioners and the Columbia County Board of Education. A tax rate of one mill represents a tax liability of one dollar per $1,000 of assessed value. Each governing authority estimates their total revenue from other sources. This figure is subtracted from their overall budgetary needs, and then a millage rate is set that will generate the necessary revenues to fulfill budgetary requirements.
Once the property owner and the Board of Assessors have come to terms with an appropriate value, this value is provided to the Tax Commissioner for tax bill calculation. To calculate a tax bill, you must first deduct any exemptions that may apply from the assessed value; thus generating a net assessed (taxable) value. Next, you multiply the net assessed value by the millage rate.
Taxes for real estate and business personal property are due in Columbia County on November 15th.
Mobile/manufactured homes are due April 1st of each year and motor vehicles are due based on the owners' birthday.
After the due date, for real estate and business personal property, an interest rate of .5625% will be added to your bill. Jan2018 interest will be prime plus 3% will be added each month. After 120 days a penalty of 5% will be added. If the property taxes remain unpaid, the Tax Commissioner has the right and responsibility to levy on the property for non-payment. Of course, we consider this a last resort for tax collection and prefer to use other collection methods. Tax bills are mailed to the homeowner, never to the mortgage company. You must forward your bill to your mortgage company if necessary.
You can pay in the office by check, cash or credit card (Visa, MasterCard & Discover). You can also pay online here on this website by credit card (Visa, MasterCard, Discover, American Express or PayPal).
A convenience fee of 2.50 % + $.30 will be added to all Credit Card payments made in the office, online or by phone.
Yes. There are several exemptions and special assessment programs available that may apply to your property. The most common are the homestead exemption for real estate and for business personal property there is the freeport exemption.
Contact the Columbia County Tax Commissioner's Office for details of the available special assessment programs and Homestead exemptions.
Homestead exemption is the system developed by the State of Georgia that exempts from taxation a specified amount of assessed value of your home. You may apply for homestead exemption in the Tax Commissioner's office.
To qualify you must both own and occupy your home as of January 1. Once you have qualified for homestead exemption and remain in the same house you do not need to reapply. However, if you move, you are required to reapply for the exemption for the new location.
Applications for homestead exemption may be submitted any time during the year, but must be received before April 1 of the taxable year to qualify for the exemption that year. If received after April 1, the Tax Commissioner will activate the exemption the following year. When the homeowner reaches the age of 62 years old, they may apply for an additional homestead exemption.
You can obtain a copy of your warranty deed from the Clerk of Superior Court deed room. This office is located in the Columbia County Courthouse.
Yes. Mobile/modular homes are considered personal property and are taxable in the State of Georgia.
The owner of any mobile/modular home located in Columbia County must file a return and obtain a location permit. In order to obtain this permit the mobile home tax for the current year must be paid in full.
Mobile Home bills are mailed in January of each year and are due on or before April 1st. All mobile homes in Columbia County are required to have a current decal visibly posted by April 1st of each year. These decals are issued upon receipt of tax payment. If you pay in person, your decal will be issued immediately. If you choose another method of payment, your decal will be mailed to you when payment is received
Property tax dollars support administration of county government and the public school system; build and maintain public buildings; bridges and county roads; pay expenses of courts; county jail and law enforcement; provide fire protection; and provide for public health and sanitation.
This is an abbreviated list of how tax dollars are used to support local government projects. Please click here to review the Georgia Code for a complete list. (O.C.G.A. 48-5-220)
When taxes remain unpaid for more than 90 days after their due date, the taxes are subject to a FIFA (lien) being recorded in the Office of the Clerk of Superior Court. These records are public so credit bureaus may access them and may use them to adversely affect your credit. The tax office does not deal with these credit bureaus and so has no control on how they use the information or how often they update their records.
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Evans, GA 30809
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PO Box 3030
Evans, GA 30809
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