Decline in Market Value

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Proposition 8, passed in November 1978, amended Proposition 13 to reflect declines in value. As a result, Revenue and Taxation Code Section 51 requires the Assessor to annually enroll either a property's factored Proposition 13 base year value or its Market Value as of January 1 (lien date), taking into account any factors causing a decline in value, whichever is less.

Proposition 8 reductions are temporary reductions which recognize the fact that the current market value of a property has fallen below it's current factored Proposition 13 base year value.

When and if the market value of the previously reduced assessment (Proposition 8) increases above its Proposition 13 factored base year value, the Assessor will once again enroll it's Proposition 13 factored base year value. Proposition 8 values can change from year to year as the market fluctuates up and down.

Any properties that have received Proposition 8 reductions in the prior year are automatically reviewed in the following year to ascertain whether that year's lien date value should be maintained, lowered, or increased. Unless there is a change in ownership or new construction, your assessment can never increase above the factored Proposition 13 base year value.

You have the right to file an appeal with the Clerk, Assessment Appeals Board's office. The filing period is from July 2 through November 30, inclusive. This form may be downloaded from the Assessment Appeal Board's website, or you may contact them at (831) 755-5066.

Please contact the Assessor's Office should you have any questions. Our office hours are from 8:00 a.m. to 5 p.m. and we may be reached at (831)-755-5035.


Q. Is the Assessor required to restore my factored base year value even if it’s more than a 2% increase?
A. Yes. Just as there is no limit to the amount of reduction, there is no limit to the amount being restored up to the factored Proposition 13 base year ceiling amount.

Q. If I have been granted a reduction for the current year will I have to request another review next year?
A. No. Once you have been granted a reduction pursuant to Proposition 8 your next year's value will automatically be reviewed. A Notification of Assessed Value card will be sent to you in July, which will indicate our findings.

Q. What should I do if I disagree with the Proposition 8 value placed on my property?
A. If after review of the Notification of Assessed Value card you disagree with the value you have until November 30th of that year in which to file an Application for Changed Assessment with the Clerk, Board of Supervisors.

Q. Why isn't the reduction under Proposition 8 permanent?
A. Proposition 8 (now California State Revenue and Taxation Code Section 51) requires the Assessor to compare each property's factored base year value with the current market value, and enroll the lessor of the two each year.

Q. What will happen to my assessment if values start to rise?
A. Here is an example of that situation (assume a 2% inflation factor for all years concerned).
-Property is purchased in 1999 for $400,000. For 2003 the factored base year value is $432,973. ($400,000 x 1.0824, the factor of 1.0824 was arrived at by compounding 2% over four years).

-However a Proposition 8 reduction is made at $415,000 as this is the January 1, 2003 market value and the lower of the two figures.

-In 2004 the market improves and the January 1, 2004 market value of the property in this example is $450,000. The factored base year value for 2004 would be $441,632 (2% higher than the previous year's factored base year value)

-Under Proposition 8 guidelines for the 2004 fiscal year we would be required to assess the property at $441,632 which is lower than the $450,000 market value. In this example your property would be raised from $415,000 to $441,632 and you would no longer be under Proposition 8 guidelines.

Q. What if my January 1, 2004 market value is $425,000 rather than $450,000?
A. Using the same example, we would raise your value to $425,000, which is lower than the factored base year value of $441,632. Again, the rule for any given year is to enroll either the factored base year value or the market value, whichever is lower.
In this example, your property would still be under Proposition 8 review as the market value of $425,000 is less than the factored base year value.


Base Year- Under Proposition 13 the assessment year 1975-76 serves as the original base year value. Thereafter, any assessment year in which real property, or a portion thereof, is purchased, is newly constructed or changes ownership shall become the base year used in determining the assessment for such real property, or portion thereof.

Factored Base Year Value- If you owned your property before March 1, 1975, the "full cash value will be the value as it appeared on the 1975-76 assessment roll increased a maximum of 2 percent per year in accordance with Proposition 13. If you acquired or constructed the property since March 1, 1975, "assessed" value is the value at the time you took title or completed construction, plus a maximum of 2 percent each year thereafter.

Fair Market Value- as defined in Revenue and Taxation Code Section 110, "The amount of cash or its equivalent that property would bring if exposed for sale in the open market under conditions in which neither buyer nor seller could take advantage of the exigencies of the other, and both the buyer and seller have knowledge of all of the uses and purposes to which the property is adapted and for which it is capable of being used, and of the enforceable restrictions upon those uses and purposes."

Lien Date- January 1, beginning in 1997; March 1 prior to 1997.


  • The Assessor can only consider the market value as of the lien date (January 1st).
  • Our office will determine the market value of your property by analyzing sales of comparable properties in the area and other pertinent data.
  • When supplying information the comparable sales must be no later than 90 days after the lien date.
  • Thus a sale cannot be beyond March 31st of the lien date in question but there is no limit as to how far backwards in time a comparable sale may be.

Proposition 8 relief (Revenue and Taxation Code Section 51) is specific to the January 1 fair market value and does not allow for relief pertaining to other dates. As a result supplemental assessments are not addressed when Proposition 8 relief is sought.