In most places, property taxes are due every year. Typically, each landowner pays his own taxes, or they are paid through a third party, such as a bank or mortgage company. It is usually not hard to find out if your property taxes are being paid by your lender or by someone else, but you may need to check very year to find out if anything has changed, since many county tax offices will not automatically provide you with that information.
Review your property tax bill when you receive it from your county. The bill should clearly show how much you owe in taxes, and, if there is a past due amount, which year each portion of the past due amount is for. Recent payments will also be recorded.
Compare your payment records, such as check stubs, credit card receipts or payment receipts from the county, to your property tax bill. The amount on your bill should match the amount you owe, based on your payment history. Mark any payments that you don’t have receipts for.
Contact the county clerk or the tax assessor’s office if your records don’t match your most recent tax bill. Ask to see payment information on your land. You may be required to produce the tax identification numbers for your property or to identify yourself with a driver’s license or other ID in order to gain access to the records. Review the payment history to see if anyone else’s name appears in the payment history. If so, then someone else has made property tax payments on your land.
Locate the property tax link on your county’s website. If you have trouble finding the county web site it may help you to go to your state’s official website and then find the link to your county there. Another method is to call your county clerk’s office and ask for the website address.
Input the tax account number for your land. You may need to agree to terms of service or other conditions before you can view the information for your property.
Check the payment history on your account. If the listing shows any names but yours, someone else has paid at least some of your property taxes. Contact your county if you have concerns about the situation.
Items you will need
- Tax bills
- Property tax receipts
- It is common for a lending institution to pay property taxes on mortgaged land. Check your records to see if your lender has an impound account for holding taxes and insurance. If that’s the case, then your lender pays your property taxes. The payment records for your property will show whether or not your taxes are being properly credited.
- According to Berkley County, California, paying property taxes does not give someone any rights to the property in question. If you have concerns that your county may operate under different rules, contact your county offices and inquire as to whether or not paying your property taxes can give someone any rights to your land.
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