WHAT THIS OFFICE DOES
Appraise Real Property & Manufactured/Mobile Homes in Clarendon County
Reappraise and reassess all property every five years in accordance with Section 12-43-217 of SC Code of Laws. The next Reassessment program is 2011 (Sample assessment notice)
Accept & process appeals of appraised/assessed values generated by this office
Map and record transfers/changes of ownership of real property through publicly recorded documents
Maintain and process legal residence and agricultural use applications.
Provide property record cards (sketch of buildings & other property related information)
Measure & appraise new construction and new parcels for tax purposes
Maintain & process Multiple Lot Discount, Homeowner's Association, and Residential Builders/Developers exemption applications
Change mailing address for real property & mobile home owners as requested
Represents the county in real property and mobile home valuation appeals before the Board of Assessment Appeals and the South Carolina Administrative Law Court
THIS OFFICE DOES NOTMaintain and process Homestead Exemption (over 65, handicapped) applications. (Contact: Auditor's Office
Give legal advice
Do real property research for legal claims
Have tax or other information on vehicles, boats, motors, or other personal property (Contact Auditor's Office)
Accept payments for County property taxes (Contact Treasurer's Office)
Assign site addresses (Contact 911 Addressing (803) 435-9310)
Give information on delinquent taxes (Contact Delinquent Tax Collector (803) 435-2684)
Issue permits ie.building, electrical, mobile home, etc (Contact Planning & Development (803) 435-8672)
Assess manufacturing or utility properties (Contact Department of Revenue)
Auditor and Treasurer (Pay taxes online)
Department of Revenue Site
South Carolina Dept. Of Motor Vehicles
SC Legislature Online
Assessable Transfer of Interest (ATI)
Section 12-37-3140 states, "For property tax years beginning after 2006 the fair market value of real property is its fair market value applicable for December thirty-first of the year in which an assessable transfer of interest (ATI) has occurred."
"An assessable transfer of interest (ATI) means a transfer of an existing interest in real property that subjects the real property to appraisal. For purposes of this definition, an existing interest in real property includes life estate interests."
For further information regarding when a transfer of interest is considered an assessable transfer of interest (ATI), see Section 12-37-3140 of the South Carolina Code of Laws.
South Carolina State Law requires that each County within the State conduct a countywide reassessment every five years. During a Countywide reassessment all real property within the County is reappraised at its current market value as of the reassessment date. Current law requires that in the year in which a reassessment is implemented the value of each parcel of real property be adjusted for improvements, gains and losses. Provided, however, that the property's value shall not increase more than fifteen percent above its value from the previous reassessment unless new improvements have been added or an assessable transfer of interest has occurred. Clarendon County is currently scheduled to implement its next reassessment in tax year 2011. Only real property and mobile/manufactured home values are affected by reassessment.
Legal Residence (4%) Owner occupied dwellings
The legal residence and not more than five acres contiguous thereto, when owned totally or in part in fee or by life estate and occupied by the owner of the interest, is taxed on an assessment equal to four percent of the fair market value of the property. (South Carolina Code of Laws, Section 12-43-220(c)).
For purposes of the assessment ratio allowed pursuant to this item, a residence does not qualify as a legal residence unless the residence is determined to be the domicile of the owner-applicant. A taxpayer may receive the four percent assessment ratio on only one residence for a tax year. (South Carolina Code of Laws, Section 12-43-220(c)).
To qualify for the special property tax assessment ratio allowed by this item, the owner-occupant must have actually owned and occupied the residence as his legal residence and been domiciled at that address for some period during the applicable tax year and remain in that status at the time of filing the application required by this item.(South Carolina Code of Laws, Section 12-43-220(c)).
Section 12-43-220(c) of the South Carolina Code of Laws provides:
In addition to the certification, the burden of proof for eligibility for the four percent assessment ratio is on the owner-occupant and the applicant must provide proof the assessor requires, including by not limited to:
(A) a copy of the owner-occupants most recently filed South Carolina individual income tax return;
(B) copies of South Carolina motor vehicle registrations for all motor vehicles registered in the name of the owner- occupant;
(C) current SC Driver's License showing the address of the property as owner's location.
(D) recorded Declaration of Domicile
(E) other proof required by the assessor necessary to determine eligibility for the assessment ratio allowed by this item.
Agricultural Use (4%)--Agricultural properties with bonafide agricultural use
DEFINITION OF AGRICULTURAL REAL PROPERTY
Agricultural Use (6%)--Agricultural properties with bonafide agricultural use owned by a corporation with 10 or more shareholders
Agricultural real property shall mean any tract of real property which is used to raise, harvest, store crops or feed, breed or manage livestock, produce plants, trees, fowl or animals useful to man, including the preparation of the products raised thereon for man's use and disposed of by marketing or other means. It includes but is not limited to such real property used for agriculture, grazing, horticulture, forestry, dairying and Mari culture. In the event at least 50% of a real property tract shall qualify as agricultural real property, the entire tract shall be so classified, provided no other business for profit is being operated thereon. The term "agricultural real property" shall not include any property used as the residence of the owner or others in that the taxation of such property is specifically provided of in Section12-43-220 of the South Carolina Code of Laws and Department of Revenue Regulation 117-124.7
Agricultural real property which is actually used for such purposes and meets certain size or income restrictions, not including, however, a corporation which is the owner or lessee except for certain corporations which do not
1. Have more than 10 shareholders;
2. Have as a shareholder a person (other than an estate) who is not an individual;
3. Have a nonresident alien as a shareholder; and
4. Have more than one class of stock.
Timberland tracts must be five acres or more. Tracts of timberland must be devoted to growing trees for commercial use. Tracts of timberland less than five acres qualify if any of the following conditions are met.
1. Contiguous to a qualifying tract
2. Under the same management system as a qualifying tract
3. Owned in combination with non-timberland tracts that qualify as agricultural real property.
Non-timberland (cropland) tracts must be ten acres or more. Tracts of non-timberland less than ten acres qualify if any of the following are met:
1. If contiguous tracts with identical ownership meet the minimum acreage requirement when added together.
2. If the person making application earned at least $1,000 gross farm income in at least three of the past five years or at least three of the first five years if this is initial application.
3. If the property has been owned by current owner or an immediate family member of the current owner for at least ten years ending January 1, 1994 and the property was classified as agricultural real property for tax year 1994.
Rollback Taxes - When real property which is in agriculture use and is being valued, assessed and taxed under the provisions of this article, is applied to another use other than agriculture, it shall be subject to additional taxes, hereafter referred to as rollback taxes, in the amount equal to the difference, if any, between taxes payable on the basis of the agricultural use valuation and assessment and the taxes that would have been paid had the property been taxed at the market value appraisal and 6% assessment ratio. The rollback can be applied to the five years proceeding the first year the property is taxed at 6% due to the change in use.
Multi-Lot Discount - If you are the original developer of a subdivision, you may be eligible for a discount on the values of unsold lots. You may apply each year for this discount. Application period is January 1 to May 1 of each tax year.
Builders/Developers Exemption - The South Carolina General Assembly passed legislation in 2009 to give builders/developers an exemption on property tax for newly constructed, unoccupied, detached, single-family homes that received their Certificate of Occupancy (CO) after 2006 (in those jurisdictions that require COs). Application period is from January 1st thru January 31st of each tax year.
Appeals - If you disagree with the assessor's appraisal of your property and wish to appeal, state law provides the following procedure in Section 12-60-2520 of the 1976 Code of Laws, as amended.
Within ninety (90) days of the date of the assessment, you must file a written objection with the assessor.
The assessor will conduct a field review and notify the property owner of the results of the review.
Within thirty (30) days of further objection, a conference will be scheduled. The assessor, in turn, will request that you provide within thirty (30) days, additional data to help determine the value of your property.
After the conference has been completed, the Assessor will notify you in writing of his finding. If you still disagree with the assessment, you have thirty (30) days to file a written notice of your request to appeal your assessment to the Board of Assessment Appeals.
State law requires that you must pay 80%of the tax generated on the proposed assessment if it appears that the appeal will not be settled by December 31 of the tax year in question. A taxpayer may pay more than 80% if agreed in writing by the taxpayer.
Represent Taxpayers During the Administrative Tax Process?
South Carolina Code Ann. Section 12-60-90
Attorneys and certified public accountants.
Enrolled agents - An "enrolled agent" has demonstrated special competence in federal taxation by passing a written examination administered by the Internal Revenue Service or through employment with the Internal Revenue Service.
Partners may represent their partnership.
Corporate officers may represent their corporation.
Fiduciaries and their full-time employees may represent the entity for which they are a fiduciary.
Full-time employees may represent their employer.
Individuals may represent themselves or a member of their immediate family if the individual is not compensated. (Not recommended for proceedings beyond the County Board of Assessment Appeals)
Real estate appraiser who is registered, or certified in the state. (As to value only)
Real Estate - All land and the buildings, structures or improvements on that land.
Real Property - The rights of ownership of real estate ("The Bundle of Rights")
Assessment - An appraised or determined value of real property multiplied by the appropriate corresponding ratio (e.g. legal residence, agricultural use) equals the assessment or assessed value.
Fair Market Value - The amount for which property can reasonably be expected to sell on the open market with a willing buyer and willing seller.
Reassessment - Process required by law to determine changes in market value of property over a certain period of time in order to provide equity among taxpayers. (Every five years in South Carolina)
Millage Rate - The amount of mills levied on the taxable (assessed) value in order to fund the budget of a school district, county, city or other political subdivision. One mill equals 1/1000 of a dollar (.001).
Tax Map Number - This is a unique number that is the basis for property identification and location.
GIS/Geographic Information System - This is the linking of tabular data to maps residing in a computer as graphics files. Either maps or data can be called interactively.
Assessable Transfer of Interest - A transfer of an existing interest in real property that subjects the real property to reappraisal. For purposes of this definition, an existing interest in real property includes a life estate interest.
Capped Value - Each political subdivision shall value real property by a method in which the value of each parcel of real property, adjusted for improvements and losses, does not increase more than fifteen percent every five years unless an assessable transfer of interest occurs.