Laws, Regulations & Annotations
Property Taxes Law Guide – Revision 2015
Property Tax Rules
Title 18, Public Revenues California Code of Regulations
DIVISION 1. STATE BOARD OF EQUALIZATION—PROPERTY TAX
Chapter 4. Equalization by State Board (370–500)
Article 4. Change in Ownership and New Construction (460–500)
Reference: Article XIII A, Sections 1, 2, California Constitution. Section 15606, Government Code.
(a) When real property, or a portion thereof, is newly constructed after the 1975 lien date, the assessor shall ascertain the full value of such "newly constructed property" as of the date of completion. This will establish a new base year full value for only that portion of the property which is newly constructed, whether it is an addition or alteration. The taxable value on the total property shall be determined by adding the full value of new construction to the taxable value of preexisting property reduced to account for the taxable value of property removed during construction. The full value of new construction is only that value resulting from the new construction and does not include value increases not associated with the new construction.
(b) "Newly constructed" or "new construction" means and includes:
(1) Any substantial addition to land or improvements, including fixtures, such as adding land fill, retaining walls, curbs, gutters or sewers to land or constructing a new building or swimming pool or changing an existing improvement so as to add horizontally or vertically to its square footage or to incorporate an additional fixture, as that term is defined in this section.
(2) Any substantial physical alteration of land which constitutes a major rehabilitation of the land or results in a change in the way the property is used.
Examples of alterations to land to be considered new construction are: site development of rural land for the purpose of establishing a residential subdivision; altering rolling, dry grazing land to level irrigated crop land; or preparing a vacant lot for use as a parking facility.
(A) In any instance in which an alteration is substantial enough to require reappraisal, only the value of the alteration shall be added to the base year value of the pre-existing land or improvements. Increases in land value caused by appreciation or a zoning change rather than new construction shall not be enrolled, for example:
1. Land value 1975
2. Land value 1978
3. Value of alteration
4. Value of structure added 1978
1979 roll value (1+3+4)
= $90,000 (must be adjusted to reflect appropriate indexing)
(B) Alterations to land which do not constitute a major rehabilitation or which do not result in a change in the way the property is used shall not result in reappraisal.
(3) Any physical alteration of any improvement which converts the improvement or any portion thereof to the substantial equivalent of a new structure or portion thereof or changes the way in which the portion of the structure that had been altered is used, e.g., physical alterations to an old structure to make it the substantial equivalent of a new building without any change in the way it is used or alterations to a warehouse that makes it usable as a retail store or a restaurant. Only, the value, not necessarily the cost, of the alteration shall be added to the appropriately indexed base year value of the pre-existing structure.
(4) Excluded from alterations that qualify as "newly constructed" is construction or reconstruction performed for the purpose of normal maintenance and repair, e.g., routine annual preparation of agricultural land or interior or exterior painting, replacement of roof coverings or the addition of aluminum siding to improvements or the replacement of worn machine parts.
(5) Any substantial physical rehabilitation, renovation or modernization of any fixture which converts it to the substantial equivalent of a new fixture or any substitution of a new fixture. Substantial equivalency shall be ascertained by comparing the productive capacity, normally expressed in units per hour, of the rehabilitated fixture to its original productive capacity.
(c) For purposes of this regulation, "fixture" is defined as an improvement whose use or purpose directly applies to or augments the process or function of a trade, industry, or profession.
(d) New construction in progress on the lien date shall be appraised at its full value on such date and each lien date thereafter until the date of completion, at which time the entire portion of property which is newly constructed shall be reappraised at its full value.
(e) For purposes of this regulation, the date of completion is the date the property or portion thereof is available for use. In determining whether the real property or a portion thereof is available for use, consideration shall be given to the date of the final inspection by the appropriate governmental official, or, in the absence of such inspection, the date the prime contractor fulfilled all of his contract obligations, or in the case of fixtures, the date of the completion of testing of machinery and equipment.
History: Adopted June 29, 1978, effective July 3, 1978.
Amended September 26, 1978, effective October 2, 1978.
Amended January 25, 1979, effective March 1, 1979. Applicable to assessments for 1979 and years thereafter.
Repealed Old Rule and Adopted New Rule August 16, 1979, effective August 22, 1979.
Amended February 25, 1998, effective June 12, 1998.