Prepayments are available now!
Start paying your future taxes in advance,
and avoid the pain at the holidays.
If you follow the instructions below,
you do not need to submit a coupon with your prepayment.
Don't forget to return your assessment form before you start to pre-pay!
- ALWAYS INCLUDE THE PARCEL NUMBER YOU WISH TO PAY ON YOUR CHECK! Prepayments may only be made by handwritten check or online bill pay. MAKE SURE your online bill pay provider includes the parcel number as your account number on your check.
- You may pay any amount over $20, any time between March 1 and September 30 each year. Prepayments will be held in a separate account until bills are generated each year. They will be applied before bills are mailed, and your mailed or online bill will reflect your outstanding balance. Overpayments MAY NOT be refunded unless there is a change in circumstances and the taxpayer will no longer owe taxes to Clay County in the future. Prepayments cannot be adjusted, refunded, or applied to taxes at any time between March 1 and September 30 each year. They will be applied to the annual tax bill in late October, and refunds and adjustments will be made one time, after the annual tax bills have been generated. No prepayments will be accepted after September 30 or before March 1 each year. Taxpayers do not earn interest on prepaid money.
- We cannot help you estimate the amount of taxes you will owe. Please use previous tax bills to estimate the amount you should pre-pay--taking into account any changes in the property you owned, or any changes in the levy rates that apply to your address. If you own different property this year than last, you can roughly estimate the taxes using the following calculations:
How to estimate your personal property tax bill
Market value of property x 33.3% x levies that apply to the address where the property is legally located (usually 8-10% depending on a variety of factors)
Example: A car is worth $10,000 according to the NADA average trade-in value. Multiply $10,000 x 33% to get $3,300 in assessed value. Then multiply $3,300 by the levies that apply to the address where the property is legally located. If your total levies (don't forget to include your city) are 9%, your tax bill on your $10,000 car will be $297. Don't forget this amount now includes both the county and your city.
How to estimate your residential real estate bill
Market value of property x 19% x levies that apply to your address
Example: Your home is worth $180,000 in an arms-length, open market transaction (not a foreclosure, or the price you paid when you bought it from someone desperate to sell).
Multiply $180,000 x 19% to get an assessed value of $34,200. Then multiply $34,200 by the levies that apply to the address of the property. If your total levies (don't forget to include your city) are 9%, your tax bill on your $180,000 house will be $3,078. Don't forget this amount now includes both the county and your city.
You can determine the levies that apply to a particular tax parcel by looking at last year's bill, but keep in mind that levies often change from year to year.
**COMMERCIAL AND AGRICULTURAL PROPERTY HAVE DIFFERENT ASSESSED VALUE CALCULATIONS AND MAY BE SUBJECT TO ADDITIONAL TAXES.**
Policies that apply to pre-payments
- Prepayments must be made by written instrument (check, money order, etc.—no credit cards or cash). You may use your bank's online bill payment system.
- All payments received at any time from any taxpayer will be applied to the oldest taxes first. You may not prepay a future year if you owe taxes from a prior year.
- A valid Clay County parcel number, current address, and working phone number must be written on all prepayments. Prepayments sent without this information will be returned, uncashed.
- If you use your bank's online bill pay to send us a pre-payment, please have your bank write "PREPAYMENT" in the memo line, and make sure your parcel number appears on the check. You may only prepay one parcel per check. Any online bill payments received in this office with uncertain information will be returned, uncashed.
- Again, you may only prepay one parcel per check. Payments sent to us with instructions to apply a single check to more than one parcel will be returned, uncashed.
- You must be assessed each year before you prepay! If you send us money, but do not have an assessment on file with the assessor's office, we will return your money without applying it to a tax bill. We will not be able to verify whether you were assessed until October or November, so all refunds will be issued at that time.
- Money paid to the Collector's office in anticipation of a future tax bill cannot be returned or refunded under any circumstances until the annual bill file is created (late October or early November). At that time, all money that is not applied to a tax bill will be refunded.
- Taxpayers paying money in anticipation of a future tax bill will not earn interest under any circumstances. All interest earned by the prepayment account will offset fees to operate the account or will be disbursed to the taxing jurisdictions.
- Prepayments cannot be refunded in most cases. If you are eligible for a refund, a check will be sent to the name and address on the check, and will take at least two weeks to process.
- If a prepayment check is returned by the bank for any reason, we will not accept prepayments from that person or on that parcel for 3 years from the date the check is returned.
- We will mail you a receipt for every payment, but these receipts cannot be viewed online or used at the DMV.
- If prepayments are returned or refunded to you for any reason, you still remain fully responsible for your taxes, and you will be responsible for interest and penalties that accrue if taxes are not paid on or before December 31 in the year they are due.
Prepayment is an OPTIONAL service provided by this office. If you choose to prepay your tax account, it is YOUR RESPONSIBILITY to make sure we have good contact information on file for you. A valid email address would be greatly appreciated. If you give us a phone number or email address, and there is a question about your payment, we will try to contact you to resolve the question. If you do not give us this information, and a question arises, we will have no choice but to mail your payment back to you.