In Colorado, property taxes are collected by County Treasurers in accordance with provisions of State Statutes, Colorado Revised Statute Title 39. Residential real estate is assessed on January 1 of the tax year at 7.96% (commercial real estate at 29%) of the actual value. Mill levies are set around December 15, and tax bills are mailed in January.
Whenever the Assessor changes the value of property, taxpayers receive a Notice of Valuation. The purpose of the notice is to advise taxpayers of the change in property value and to provide the opportunity to protest the value before the bill is mailed the following year. If you receive a Notice of Valuation, study the notice carefully. If it reflects an actual value with which you disagree or if you have any questions concerning the valuation, call your County Assessor. Don’t wait until you receive your tax bill. You must protest through the Assessor and appeal if denied through the Board of Equalization, the State Board of Assessment Appeals, District Court or select binding arbitration.
Colorado law provides that annual declarations be filed for income producing personal property, listing all machinery. equipment, furniture, trade fixtures, signs, etc., owned as of January 1. The declaration must include all personal property regardless of whether or not it is listed in the depreciation schedule or general ledger. This is true even if it has been fully depreciated, written off, or charged to expense. The declared cost must include sales tax, freight, installation charges, and the original invoice cost prior to any adjustments for purposes of income tax depreciation.
If the taxpayer has filed a complete list of property in a previous year a declaration must be completed by listing any changes, additions or deletions made to the list of property up to January 1 each year. The due date for the declaration is April 15. Additions and deletions should be described in detail, including cost and year acquired. Fixed personal property is assessed at 29% of actual value under Colorado law, 39-10-104. If you need a declaration form, contact the Assessor’s office at 720-913-1311.
Taxes are due January 1 of each year. The first-half becomes delinquent on March 1 and accrues interest at the rate of 1% per month. The second half is due on June 15. If the entire amount of tax is paid at one time on or before April 30, no interest will be charged on the first-half. The tax is delinquent June 16. When paying by mail the post office postmark will be considered the date of payment.
The City and County of Denver applies the first payment received to the property tax balance. If you paid after your mortgage company or you paid in excess of your balance, you can expect to receive your refund within six to eight weeks of the City and County of Denver processing your payment.
Delinquency notices are mailed in July. Unpaid Real Estate taxes are advertised in October. The advertising charge varies from county-to-county. The minimum charge is $10.00 by statute. The Real Estate Tax Lien Public Auction of unpaid parcels is held in November. Parcels to be sold include the amount of the unpaid taxes, interest, penalties, and fees.. There is a three year redemption period. Redemption interest is based on the Federal Reserve discount rate as of September 1st plus 9%.
After three years the buyer can apply for and receive a Treasurer’s deed if the tax lien is still unredeemed. Before the deed is issued, it is again advertised and all interested parties of record are notified and given 3-5 months to redeem.
Special Assessments for Local improvements vary throughout the state, but in Denver, they are collected by the County Treasury. Billing is done in 12 annual installments. Research of records for tax status should be addressed to Taxpayer Service Unit, 201 West Colfax Avenue, MC403 Dept 1009, Denver, CO 80202. There is a $15.00 per hour charge for research payable in advance.
If you have any further questions, contact us at (720) 913-9300. If you have questions concerning valuation, call the Assessor’s Office at (720) 913-1311.