Introduction to Property Taxes in Spokane

Located in the eastern part of Washington State, Spokane is a hub for both economic activity and residential growth within the region. Property taxes in Spokane, like other areas, play a crucial role in funding essential local services. Understanding these taxes can help property owners manage their financial responsibilities effectively.

How Property Taxes are Determined in Spokane

Property taxes in Spokane are determined based on the assessed value of real estate, which includes both land and improvements such as buildings. The Spokane County Assessor’s Office is responsible for evaluating properties to establish their market value. These values are then used to calculate the amount of tax owed by each property owner. The assessed values are determined annually and reflect changes in the market conditions.

Components of Spokane Real Estate Taxes

Spokane’s real estate taxes consist of several components that contribute to various governmental and public services. These typically include:

  • General Fund: This supports basic services such as police, fire protection, public transit, and parks.
  • Schools: A significant portion of property taxes goes to funding local public schools and educational facilities.
  • Special Districts: Taxes may also contribute to special districts like libraries, hospitals, and fire districts.
  • Voter-approved measures: Occasionally, specific projects or initiatives approved by voters can add to the tax total. This might cover bond measures for school improvements or infrastructure enhancements.

The Role of Levy Rates in Determining Tax Liability

The actual tax rate applied to properties in Spokane is a combination of different levy rates set by various taxing authorities, including the city, county, schools, and other districts. These rates are multiplied by the assessed value of the property. Critically, Washington State law caps the increase in property tax revenues that districts can collect each year, which can affect individual tax bills.

Understanding Tax Statements and Payments

Property tax statements in Spokane are typically mailed to homeowners in February, with payments due twice a year – usually at the end of April and October. These statements detail the total amount due, including a breakdown of where the taxes are allocated. Understanding these statements is crucial for homeowners who wish to manage their finances and ensure timely payments to avoid penalties.

Exemptions and Reductions

Several programs are available in Spokane to help reduce property tax burdens for eligible homeowners:

  • Senior Citizen and Disabled Exemption: Qualifying seniors and disabled individuals can receive reductions in their property taxes based on income, age, and disability status.
  • Current Use Programs: These programs offer tax relief for properties used for specific purposes such as agriculture, timber, or open space, aiming to encourage the preservation of these lands.
  • Deferrals: Under certain conditions, homeowners may defer property tax payments to help manage short-term financial strain.

Appealing Your Property Tax Assessment

If a property owner in Spokane disagrees with the assessed value determined by the county assessor, there is a provision to appeal the assessment. This process involves submitting an appeal to the Spokane County Board of Equalization, which reviews the cases and provides a decision. Proper documentation and adherence to deadlines are critical in these scenarios.


Understanding and managing real estate taxes are key aspects of property ownership in Spokane. By staying informed about tax responsibilities, exemptions, and relief programs, property owners can better navigate the complexities of real estate taxes and contribute effectively to their community’s resources while managing their financial health.

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