Real Estate

Property Assessment is set forth by the Missouri Constitution and Missouri State Statutes. Property assessment is a requirement in all Missouri counties.

The system of annual assessment on personal property and biennial (every odd year) assessment on real estate is per Missouri Statutes.

The assessment system is under the oversight of the Missouri State Tax Commission. The commission ensures that all counties are uniform and equitable across the state and that statutory compliance is upheld.

How is real property assessed?
Assessments are based on Market Value. Real property is revalued every odd year. The effective date of the assessment is January 1st of the assessment year. The assessor determines a full or partial value of new construction depending upon the state of completion as of January 1st.

What is Market Value?
Market Value is the most probable price a property should sell for in a competitive and open market with an informed buyer and seller acting on their own and the price not being affected by any undue stimulus. This is generally described as an Arms Length Transaction.

How is Market Value estimated?
Three appraisal methods are used to determine the value of property:

  1. Market approach Your property is evaluated by comparing similar properties that have recently sold. Adjustments may be made for differences such as a garage, finished basement, or better location of those comparable properties. This can be the most reliable approach for residential property where there are frequent sales and similarities in properties.
  2. Cost approach First, the value of the land is estimated, as if vacant. The assessor then adds the amount it would take to replace your structure with one of similar construction and amenities, including current costs of materials and labor, profit, overhead, permit fees, and the like. If your structure is not new, the assessor then applies depreciation from all causes, and subtracts that amount from the calculation of replacement cost.
  3. Income approach This approach works well for apartments, shopping centers and office buildings. The assessor first estimates potential gross income from rentals, then subtracts an amount for vacancies and operating expenses. The amount of net income is then converted to a value for the property, using a process called capitalization.

Why do values change?
State law requires that all real property be reassessed every odd numbered year. Changes in market value as indicated by research, sales ratio studies and analysis of local conditions are used in determining your value.

Does the assessor visit my property?
An appraiser that is a member of the assessor's staff performs an exterior inspection of the property. Occasionally an interior inspection will be conducted when necessary, or upon invitation by the property owner. All staff members have photo I.D.’s

Does the Assessor or staff have the right to come on to my property?
Missouri Statutes provide for access to property by the Assessor and staff for assessment purposes.

Mo Rev Statutes Chapter 137 Sec 137.130. Whenever there shall be any taxable property in any county, and from any cause no list thereof shall be given to the assessor in proper time and manor, or whenever the assessor has insufficient information to assess any real property, the assessor or an employee of the assessor shall assess the property based upon a physical inspection or on the best information the assessor can obtain; and for that purpose the assessor or an employee of the assessor shall have lawful right to enter into any lands and make any examination and search which may be necessary to assess such real property only when the assessor is entering because no list of taxable personal property has been given, and may examine any person upon oath touching the same. The assessor or an employee of the assessor shall not enter the interior of any structure on any real property as part of the inspection to assess such property without permission. The assessor shall list, assess and cause taxes to be imposed upon omitted taxable personal property in the current year and in the event personal property was also subject to taxation immediately preceding three years, but was omitted, the assessor shall also list, assess and cause taxes to be imposed upon such property.

How is my assessment level established?
Once Market Value has been determined, the assessor calculates a percentage of that value to arrive at assessed value. The percentage is based on the classification, determined by the type of property or how it is used.

Real Estate Assessment Rates:

Residential 19%
Agricultural 12%
Commercial / Other 32%

An example is a residence with a market value of $75,000. The assessment rate is 19% which would place its assessed value at $14,250.

How is my real estate tax liability calculated?
Assessed Value X Local Tax Rate / 100 = Tax Liability.  For a printable listing of local tax rates, click here.

How are real estate classifications determined?
Missouri statutes define the three subclasses of real estate:

Subclass 1 – Residential property, all real property improved by a structure which is used or intended to be used for residential living by human occupants, vacant land in connection with an airport, land used as a golf course, and manufactured home parks, but residential property shall not include facilities used primarily for transient housing.

Subclass 2 – Agricultural and Horticultural property is that which is actively used for those purposes. The University of Missouri provides the State Tax Commission with estimated values for each of the eight agricultural grades based upon soil surveys, soil productivity indexes, production costs, crop yields and other pertinent factors. It is not based on market value. However, when the highest and best use of land is considered to be agricultural, and it is not actively farmed, it is assessed according to market value and not by productivity guidelines.

Subclass 3 – Utility, industrial and railroad property, and any other real estate that does not fit either of the other two classes. Includes mines, stores and factories.

Is all real property taxed?
The following property types are not subject to real estate taxes:

Exempt – Property of non-profit corporations, churches, schools, taxing entities, 501-C3 organizations.

Chapter 353 Abatement – Some properties are eligible for abatements. For more information about Missouri State Statutes Section 353, see the Chapter 353 Tax Abatement Document from the Missouri Department of Economic Development.

What if I disagree with the assessor's value?
If you disagree with the assessor's estimate of value, contact the assessor's office as soon as you are notified of your assessment and schedule an informal meeting with the assessor or one of the staff. Many misunderstandings or disagreements are taken care of at this level.

If after the informal hearing you are not satisfied, you may file a protest with the Board of Equalization. The appeal must be on a BOE form from the assessors office. The form must be submitted to the Board of Equalization before the second Monday in July.

If you are not satisfied with the decision of the Board of Equalization. You may appeal to the State Tax Commission by September 30th or 30 days after the Board of Equalization's decision, whichever is later. For more information on appeals to the Sate Tax Commission, see their web site at