New York State Office of Real Property Services (ORPS)
The New York State Office of Real Property Services (ORPS) provides a variety of resources to help taxpayers understand Real Property Tax and the Assessment of property.
Valuing & Assessing Real Property
In New York State, almost all property is assessed locally by assessors who are appointed or elected at the municipal level. The assessor's first step in assessing property is to determine the market value of the property. Market value is the price most people would pay for a property in its current condition. Information regarding the methods for determining market value is available in the Job of the Assessor.
Once the assessor estimates the market value of a property, the assessment is calculated. The Real Property Tax Law requires all properties in each municipality (except in New York City and Nassau County) to be assessed at a uniform percentage of market value each year (see RPTL Sections 301 and 305). This means that all taxable properties in each city, town and village must be assessed at market value or all at the same uniform percentage of market value each year. Each assessor signs an oath to this effect when he or she certifies that the tentative assessment roll is uniform.
State Law also requires assessors to include the estimate of market value and assessment for each property and the uniform percentage (or level of assessment) for all taxable property on the tentative assessment roll.
Everyone pays his or her fair share of taxes as long as every property in a locality is assessed at the same percent of value. (Also see Fair Assessments: A Guide for Property Owners.)