To help vehicle owners, the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors indicated their intent to approve 10% tax relief for personal property taxes as part of their FY 2024 budget mark-up today. This action provides for almost $64 million in tax relief in total for vehicle owners.
“Our Board recognizes that our residents are feeling the stress of the rising cost of living brought on by a host of issues including nationwide inflation and rising assessments of real estate and vehicles,” said Board of Supervisors Chairman Jeffrey C. McKay. “The FY 2024 budget provides 10% in personal property taxes, which will result in car tax bills being held steady or even lowering in some cases. We will continue to press the state to increase its share of relief which has not changed since 2007.”
Assessment Ratio Change
To offer relief, the Board of Supervisors intends to approve assessing vehicles at only 90% of their market value for tax year 2023 rather than the normal 100%. State law grants local governments the option to change the assessment ratio to react to extenuating circumstances when they believe the fair market value for vehicles is less than 100%. This is the second consecutive year that Fairfax County leaders have taken this action.
Vehicle owners will see the 10% assessment reduction automatically incorporated into their personal property tax bills that will be mailed beginning in July. Because this relief will already be applied, taxpayers won’t see a separate line on their bill that shows the reduction.
This tax relief will cut car tax bills by more than 18% — or about $68 — on average for vehicle owners.
Vehicle Values Decrease by 9.8%
County tax officials say that 97% of vehicles declined in value or remained the same this year, although values overall remain elevated compared to before the pandemic.
In fact, cars, trucks and other vehicles dropped 9.8% in value on average compared to 2022, according to the J.D. Power pricing guide. Fairfax County, along with every jurisdiction in the state, uses this guide to determine assessed value, and assessments are based on a vehicle’s value as of Jan. 1, 2023, as required by law.
Additional Tax Relief and Appealing Your Assessment
In addition to the 10% assessment reduction, seniors and people with disabilities may also apply for personal property tax relief. To qualify, residents must meet income and net worth limits with a $75,000 cap on total net assets as of Dec. 31, 2022.
Vehicle owners may appeal their car’s assessment if it has high mileage, body damage or serious mechanical defects as of Jan 1. Learn more about how to file an appeal, and contact the Department of Tax Administration in a timely manner if you have a question. While vehicle owners wait for the results of an appeal, they should still pay their tax bill by the Oct. 5 due date to avoid penalties and interest charges. If the assessment is later reduced as a result of an appeal, a refund will be issued based on the corrected assessment.