I've noticed that the assessed value and the list price of home are very different.

Asked by Van Woerkom, Novato, CA Wed Aug 21, 2013

For example a home in San Anselmo is listed for $799K but only assessed for 76K. Is this typical? How do the assessors reach a homes assessment?

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Sylvia Barry, MAS,CIPS,SRES’s answer
Sylvia Barry,…, Agent, Marin, CA
Wed Aug 21, 2013
The house you are looking at is certainly an extreme example of difference between assessed value and listing price (which is not necessary market value)! One might suspect the house never changed hands after it was built in 1908 and the owner benefited from Prop 13 later!

Assessed value for a home is used for property tax purposes instead of marketing purposes; which is why they can be quite different.

As mentioned below, Assessed Value is arrived using Purchase price adjusted by property 13 allowable annual increases, adjusted by taxable improvements to the property through the years.

This is why when people are selling or buyer a home, instead of using assessed value or listing price as guidance, a comparable market analysis for similar properties and working knowledge of recent sales of similar properties instead of assessed value is used to help arrive market value for a property.

Hope this helps!

Sylvia Barry
Web Reference:  http://www.SylviaBarryRE.com
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Mary Kay and…, Agent, San Rafael, CA
Wed Aug 21, 2013
The basis for the assessed value of a home is the purchase price plus any improvements that have been permitted over the years of ownership of the home. The base assessed value of a home can be increased no more than 2% per year, so someone who purchased years ago will likely have a much lower assessment than an owner who recently purchased at today's prices. Assessed value for property tax purposes and market value are sometimes drastically different. When and if you do purchase a home or condo/townhouse, the property will be re-assessed for property tax purposes at the purchase price that you paid for the property.

It sounds as if you should be meeting with an experienced Realtor that you trust will educate you about the process and the benefits of purchasing & owning real estate.

Mary Kay & Kathy
0 votes
Lance King, Agent, San Francisco, CA
Wed Aug 21, 2013
Assessed value has absolutely nothing to do with market value. Assessed value is based upon purchase price (prop 13) so most likely the house you are citing was bought a long time ago.

If you want to know what market value is find a reputable, experienced pro who is familiar with the area. Although we are based in SF we work up there all the time if you want some help.

Best Regards,

Lance King/Owner-Managing Broker
King Realty Group

DRE# 01384425
0 votes
Thank you. I get it now! I now know I need to look for an older home.
Flag Wed Aug 21, 2013
Patti Cohn, Agent, Mill Valley, CA
Wed Aug 21, 2013
Hi there,

Prop103 set the assessed value at approx 1% of the purchase price and basically froze the tax rate that existed at that time. Property taxes in CA are generally low for a lo of home owners.That is par of the reason we have a shortage of inventory. It is likely that the person selling has owned the property for decades. The assessed value is not indication of fair market value.
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