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Property and Taxes FAQ

What is the mill levy and how is the mill levy set?

The mill levy is the tax rate that is applied to the assessed value. In general terms, the mill levy is determined by dividing the dollars needed for local services by the assessed property value in the service area. An additional amount is then added for public schools. After the local government budgets are published and hearings are completed, the county clerk computes the final mill levies for each tax unit and certifies the tax roll to the county treasurer for collection.

What is the process if I feel my value is too high?

If you have reason to believe that your property is valued too high, submit a "payment under protest" form with your payment. These forms are available at http://www.kansas.gov/cota/documents/PR%20Appeal%20to%20Co.pdf (PDF format).

After submitting this form, the Appraiser office will contact you to make arrangements for a hearing. At this time you will provide the necessary paperwork to prove that your value is valid.

When building my own home, can I do my own electrical, plumbing and mechanical work?

Homeowners may do their own electrical, plumbing, and mechanical work.  If they do not have a Licensed Master Electrician/Plumber/Mechanic reviewing and taking responsibility for their work, they will need to submit applicable wiring, plumbing, or HVAC diagrams and details for review.

 

If the inspection of the homeowner's work should fail twice, the work will be required to have a Licensed Master Electrician/Plumber/Mechanic correct and complete the work.

Who is in charge of maintaining the road in front of my house?

There are several agencies located within Douglas County with rural roadway maintenance responsibilities. State and Federal highways are maintained by the Kansas Department of Transportation. Other major rural routes are maintained by the Douglas County Public Works Department. Local rural roads are maintained by individual townships. Please see the Douglas County Road Map for your specific location, or visit the Roads page to identify which agency is responsible for your specific road(s).

Who needs to list personal property for taxation?

K.S.A. 79-303 states "Every person, association, company or corporation who owns or holds, subject to his or her control, any taxable personal property is required by law to list the property for assessment."

If any person, association, company or corporation has in their possession or custody any taxable personal property belonging to others, it shall be their duty to list the property with the appraiser in the name of the owner of the property.

Who pays the taxes due on property I sold or purchased?

Except for certain motor vehicles, property tax due on personal property is the responsibility of the owner of record January 1 of each year. For real property, if not addressed in private contract, the buyer is responsible for the property tax if the property is sold on or after January 1 and before November 1. The seller is responsible for the property tax if purchased on or after November 1 and prior to January 1. (K.S.A. 79-1805) Private contracts between buyer and seller will often specify who pays the taxes.

Why does the Register of Deeds exist?

This office is responsible for keeping a record of who owns what property. When you sell your property, someone checks our records to make sure that you have clear title to the property. If you are the buyer, someone is doing the same. They will need to know if the property is in your name (Deed) and is there are any liens against the property (Mortgage, Federal Tax Liens, State Tax Lien, etc.). The records here are also used to determine where to send the tax bill, where to put utility lines, how to make the best land usage plans and lots more.

Why is property taxed in Kansas?

Your tax dollars are used by local government to provide funding for roads, parks, fire protection, police protection, health and other services. Property taxes also fund public school districts. All property tax dollars received by the state are redistributed to public school districts or to educational building funds.