Assessor

Mission

The Board of Assessors is charged with accurately determining the value of all real and personal property located within the City of Everett for the purpose of taxation.

The board determines and rules on abatements and exemptions to be granted.

The assessors are also obligated by state law to assess all real property at its full and fair cash values as of January 1 of each year. Full and fair cash value is defined as 100% of the property’s fair market value.

It is the price an owner willing but not under compulsion to sell and to receive from 1 willing but not under compulsion to buy. Full and fair cash value is the applied constitutional and statutory standard that protects the property owner’s right to pay only his fair share of the tax burden.

Function

The Board of Assessors is charged with accurately determining the value of all real and personal property located within the City of Everett for the purpose of taxation.

The board determines and rules on abatements and exemptions to be granted.

The assessors are also obligated by state law to assess all real property at its full and fair cash values as of January 1 of each year. Full and fair cash value is defined as 100% of the property’s fair market value.

It is the price an owner willing but not under compulsion to sell and to receive from 1 willing but not under compulsion to buy. Full and fair cash value is the applied constitutional and statutory standard that protects the property owner’s right to pay only his fair share of the tax burden.

Contact

Email:
William D. Hart
Chairman
william.hart@ci.everett.ma.us

B.J. Devereux
Assessor
bernard.devereux@ci.everett.ma.us

Phone Number:
617-394-2205

Address:
Assessors Department
484 Broadway
Room 11
Everett, MA 02149

Hours:
Monday & Thursday, 8am to 7:30pm
Tuesday and Wednesday, 8am to 5pm

Abatement

Value Discrepancies
If your opinion of the value of your property differs from the assessed value, go to the Assessor’s Department and collect pertinent data to support your opinion.

The Board of Assessors will answer your questions about the assessment. When questioning the assessed value, ask yourself these questions:

  • Is my data correct? (building measurements, land area, etc.)
  • Is my value in line with others on the street?
  • Is my value in line with prior calendar year sales prices in my neighborhood?

Sales prices of the prior calendar year, condition of the property, building area and lot area are the most critical factors in the valuation process. There is a variety of information available to assist you in determining whether your assessment is fair and equitable.

Abatement Application
If after your research, you feel your property is overvalued, your next step is to file an Abatement Application with the Board of Assessors.

Tax Bill Designation
Everett is a quarterly tax bill community. The first 2 bills issued (due August and November) are preliminary or estimated tax payments based on your prior year’s tax. The notice of the 3rd payment, referred to as the actual tax bill, is when the filing period for abatement applications commences.

The 3rd tax bill or actual bill is usually issued at the end of December. The application for abatement must be filed with the Board of Assessors no later than the February tax due date (usually February 1 unless that is a weekend or holiday), or have a United States Post office postmark of no later than February 1.

The information regarding the filing of abatement or exemption application is also on your tax bill. The application must be on file in the Assessor’s Department or have a U.S. post office postmark as of that date.

Remember, you are appealing your assessment/value not your taxes. You must timely pay your taxes pending the abatement request.

Receipt of Application
Once the application is time-stamped as received by the Assessing Department, it cannot be added to, changed or withdrawn – it is accepted as is, once it is stamped with the date received. The Board of Assessors will accept an addendum with additional information and attach it to the application, if necessary. Make sure you make a case, give reasons you feel it is overvalued.

If you have a question, please come in for an application or contact the Assessors Department and an application will be mailed to you.

Abatement Request Denied
You will receive a notice indicating your application was denied. You may appeal to the State Appellate Tax Board (ATB) within 3 months of the date of the Assessors decision which will be on your denial notice. Their phone number is 617-727-3100 for more information or you can visit their website.

Abatement request Approved
You will receive an abatement certificate indicating the amount of the abatement. Your abatement will normally be credited towards your 4th payment (Due in May) If your abatement is granted after your bill is paid in full, you will automatically receive a refund check.

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man measuring a wall

Exemptions

Residential Exemptions

Residential exemptions are a local option exemption, which has been accepted in Everett. A residential exemption is a credit applicable to all residential properties, used by the owner as his/her domicile.

Votes
Residential exemptions is an annual vote at the option of the Mayor, with the approval of City Council. Each year the vote to accept the exemption decides the percentage of the Average assessment of all residential properties within the city up to a maximum of 20%.

This exemption is only applied to the principal residence of a taxpayer as used by the taxpayer for income tax purposes.

Calculations
For Fiscal Year 2019, the total assessed value of all residential properties in Everett was $4,055,191,542, which comprised of 8551 properties, making the average residential assessment of $474,236. The Mayor and City Council chose a 25% to be credited. 25% of $474,236 equals to $118,559 in assessed value or $1,467.76 in tax dollars.

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Proposed Ordinances

SENIORS

Clause

Basic Qualification

Maximum Income

Maximum Assets

Exemption Tax Amount

17D

41C

17D

Age 70 or Older

Age 65 or Older Single

Age 65 or Older Married

None

$24,628

$36,942

$55,000

$40,000

$40,000

$1,000

$175

$1,000

VETERANS

Clause

Basic Qualification

Maximum Income

Maximum Assets

Exemption Tax Amount

17D

41C

17D

Age 70 or Older

Age 65 or Older Single

Age 65 or Older Married

None

$24,628

$36,942

$55,000

$40,000

$40,000

$1,000

$175

$1,000

OTHERS

Clause

Basic Qualification

Maximum Income

Maximum Assets

Exemption Tax Amount

37A

17D

42

Legally Blind

Surviving Spouse or Minor Child

Surviving Spouse or Minor Child of Police Office or Firefighter Killed in the Line of Duty

None

None

None

None

None

None

$500

$175

100%

Important Dates

January 1: The “Assessment date” of all real and personal property for the following fiscal year. The ownership, use, and physical characteristics of all property are “frozen” as of this date for determining the assessment for the following fiscal year.
February 1: This is the final day for filing abatement applications with the Assessing Department. The application must be on file in the Assessor’s Department or, if mailed, have a United States postmark of no later than February 1. This is the due date for the 3rd quarter tax.
March 1: This is the final day for filing Forms of Lists by businesses. Late March Is the final time for filing applications for statutory exemption, due within 3 months of the mailing of the 3rd notice of payment.
May 1: This is the 4th quarter due date for payment of tax. July 1 Fiscal year begins. This is the qualification date for all statutory exemptions except Residential Exemptions, which has a January 1 assessment date. Notice of the 1st tax payment for the new fiscal year is issued and the bill is due August 1.
October 1: The notice of the 2nd tax payment for the fiscal year is issued, and is due November 1.
Early November: The city receives approvals from the Department of Revenue on values, new growth, etc. The Assessors present proposed tax rate to the City Council.
Early December: The City Council votes on and approves the classification shift with the resulting tax rate.
Late December: The notice of the 3rd tax payment, known as the Actual Bill, is issued. Mailing of the tax bill starts the period for filing abatement and exemption applications. Abatement applications must be filed with the Assessing Department no later than February 1 or have a United States postmark of no later than that date. Exemption applications must be filed within 3 months from the date of mailing the actual bills.

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Patriot Properties Database

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Property Revaluation

Function
A revaluation is an update of all assessments in the city conducted under the direction of the Board of Assessors. The Board of Assessors are state-certified individuals whose duties are to discover, list and value all real and personal property in the City in a uniform and equitable manner. The Board of Assessors is not involved in the collection of property taxes.

Property Improvements
Generally speaking, improvements that increase the market value of a property will increase the assessment. The following are typical item examples that may increase the assessment of your property:

  • added bathrooms
  • added rooms or garage
  • central air conditioning
  • extensive remodeling
  • fireplaces
  • substantial modernization of kitchen or bathroom

Property Repairs
Normal maintenance will help retain the market value of your property, but generally will not affect your assessment. The following examples are typical items that will not increase the assessed value of your property:

  • adding or replacing gutter downspouts
  • lawns and landscaping
  • new ceilings or walls
  • new roof
  • replacing furnace
  • replacing windows
  • vinyl siding or new shingles
  • wiring modernization
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FY 2020 Preliminary Values

Taxes

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Frequently Asked Questions

What does an Assessor do?

Assessors are required by Massachusetts General Laws to value all real and personal property. The valuations are subject to taxation (referred to as Ad Valorem Tax). Ad Valorem tax means that property is taxed according to value. Property in Massachusetts is assessed/valued at 100% fair market value.

It is required by Department of Revenue that the values are submitted to them for certification every 5 years. Everett’s schedule is 2020, 2025 etc. The Assessing Department is also required to do interim adjustments in the 4 off years. This is accomplished by actual sales studies – comparing the assessment of the property to its selling price. This is done so that the property taxpayer pays his or her fair share of the cost of local government, in proportion to the amount of money the property is worth.

What does an Assessor not do?

The Assessor does not raise or lower taxes. The Assessor does not make the laws which affect property owners. The Massachusetts Constitution requires that direct taxes on persons be proportionately and reasonably imposed. In addition, the Declaration of Rights, Part I, Article 10, requires each individual to bear his fair share of public expenses.

The Assessor’s Department has nothing to do with the total amount of tax collected. The Assessor’s responsibility is to find the fair cash value of your property, so that you may pay only your fair share of the taxes. The tax rate is determined by all the taxing agencies within the City, and is the basis for the budget needed to provide services, such as schools, roads, fire, law enforcement, etc. The tax rates are simply those rates which will provide funds to pay for those services.

How is the assessment determined?

To arrive at “full and fair cash value” the Assessors must know what “willing sellers” and “willing buyers” will pay/receive for property. This is done by collecting, recording and analyzing a great deal of information about property and market characteristics in order to estimate the fair market value. This includes knowing the current cost of construction in the area and any changes in zoning, financing and economic conditions that may affect property values. The object is to estimate “full and fair cash value” as of January 1 (known as the “assessment date”) prior to the fiscal year that starts July 1.

For example, the assessment date for Fiscal Year 2016 is January 1, 2015 and Fiscal Year 2016 goes from July 1, 2015 through to June 30, 2016.

What do I do if I disagree with the assessed value of my property?

If your opinion of the value of your property differs from the assessed value, go to the Assessor’s Department and collect pertinent data to support your opinion. For information on this, please visit the Abatement page.

What is an exemption?

As stated from the Department of Revenue’s Newsletter City/Town July 2013, an exemption is a privilege established by the Legislature that releases or discharges a taxpayer from the obligation to pay all or a portion of a tax.

Property tax exemptions are found in various clauses of Massachusetts General Law Chapter 59 Section 5. Generally, personal exemptions refer to those property tax exemptions available under state law to taxpayers based on their personal circumstances.

They include, for example, exemptions available to persons who are legally blind, disabled veterans, surviving spouses, minors with a deceased parent or senior citizens. Some eligibility requirements are common to all personal exemptions, for example, taxpayers must own and occupy the property as their domicile to qualify. Other requirements apply to particular exemptions. Some exemptions or qualifications apply only in communities that adopt them.

What is the qualification date for personal exemptions?

Exempt status is determined as of July 1, which is the 1st day of the fiscal year. To qualify for an exemption from the taxes assessed for that fiscal year, the taxpayer must meet all eligibility criteria as of that date.

Who is an owner for personal exemption purposes?

All personal exemptions require the taxpayer to own the property. The taxpayer can be the sole owner or own the property with others. If there are multiple owners, some exemptions establish a minimum value that the applicant’s ownership interest must meet to qualify, which is easily satisfied. Some exemptions also require the taxpayer to have owned the property, or other property in Massachusetts for a period of time.

Is a life tenant an owner?

Yes, a life tenant is the owner of the property during his or her lifetime. An example of a legal life estate is where parents convey their home to their children but reserve the right to live there for the remainder of their lives. The parents are the life tenants. During their lives, they have possession, use and enjoyment of the property, are assessed the property taxes and have an obligation to pay them. Therefore, they may receive personal exemptions if they are otherwise eligible. The children are the remainder-men and become the owners and take possession of the property after both parents have died.

Is a person whose domicile is part of the assets of a trust an owner?

Sometimes. The person must hold both recorded legal title by being a trustee or co-trustee and a sufficient beneficial interest in the domicile through the trust to be considered an owner for exemption purposes. A person who is not a trustee does not have legal title and does not qualify for a personal exemption.

A trustee or co-trustee has the necessary beneficial interest if he/she is a named beneficiary in a recorded certificate of trust, declaration of trust or trust schedule of beneficiaries, has an express right to occupy the property under the trust or is in fact occupying it as his/her domicile, or has rights under the trust that indicate he/she can occupy the property and no one else has a beneficial interest that is exclusive or inconsistent with that occupancy. For instance to direct the trustee to turn over the title or use of the property, to receive proceeds from the sale or rental of the property or to use, apply, or spend any trust assets during his/her lifetime.

How does a taxpayer obtain a personal exemption?

The taxpayer must file an application for exemption with the Board of Assessors of the community where the property is located for each year an exemption is claimed. The application deadline for all personal exemptions is December 15 or 3 months after the actual (3rd quarter bill) bills are mailed for the fiscal year, whichever is later. Applications must be received by the Assessor’s Department on or before the deadline, or mailed to the Assessor’s Department correct mailing address by the deadline, as shown by a U.S. Post Office postmark. Filing on time is required. The Assessors cannot waive the filing date. Residential Exemption (PDF)

Are personal exemption applications public record?

No, under Massachusetts General Law Chapter 59 Section 60, applications for personal exemption cannot be disclosed to the general public. Access to applications is strictly limited to the Assessors and their staff, the Department of Revenue, other state and local officials in the performance of official duties, and designated private auditors. The taxpayer may also have access to or a copy of the applications he/she submitted. The application includes any supporting documentation submitted to substantiate the claim.

However, the exemption record book, which identifies taxpayers granted exemptions and the exemption amounts is a public record and is open to mandatory disclosure under the public records law.