Assessors

Overview

The Assessor is required by Massachusetts Law to list and value all real and personal property. Valuation is subject to ad valorem taxation on an assessment list each year. The "ad valorem" basis for taxation means that all property should be taxed "according to value", which is the definition of ad valorem. Assessed values, in Massachusetts, are based on "full and fair cash value", or 100% of the fair market value.

Assessors are required to submit these values to the State Department of Revenue for certification every three years. In the years between certification, assessors must also maintain the values. This is done so that the property taxpayer pays his or her fair share of the cost of local government in proportion to the amount of money the property is worth on a yearly basis rather than every three years.

The Assessors play a vital role in the financial well-being of the town. The generation of revenue for all municipalities begins in the Assessors' Office. The Assessor is the person that provides the necessary information and projections that are needed for a town to develop a budget to provide essential services. Whether elected or appointed Assessors are required to annually determine the full and fair cash value (100% fair market value) of all property, real and personal within their jurisdiction.

The Assessors are required to distribute the tax burden equitably under the current statutes. It is that dedication to fairness that is the driving force in establishing the values that are used to generate the tax bill. The Kingston Assessors Office must appraise and assess approximately 5000 parcels of real property, 500 billable personal property accounts, 13,850 motor vehicle excise accounts, and 380 boat excise accounts.

Checks & Balances

Every 5 years, the Department of Revenue (DOR) is charged with reviewing the assessment practices of each community and determining that all properties are equitably assessed.

On an annual basis Assessors in every community must provide a sales/ratio analysis to the Bureau of Local Assessment as part of the tax rate approval process- essentially revaluing properties on an annual basis.

New Homeowners

Please be aware that the Assessors are required to provide the tax bill to the assessed owner, the owner as of January 1st. However, the new property owner is responsible for paying the tax bill that is issued after the purchase date. If you have not received a tax bill, new property owners are advised to contact the Collector's Office for a copy of the tax bill, and the Assessors' Office to update the mailing address.

Division of Local Services

Please feel free to contact our office if further explanation is needed.

DLS Municipal Glossary of Terms

Tax Rate History

The Fiscal Year 2022 tax rate is $14.58 per thousand.

 Past Years:

  • 2021 - $16.08
  • 2020 - $16.28
  • 2019 -  $16.46
  • 2018 - $16.45
  • 2017 - $16.50
  • 2016 - $17.61
  • 2015 - $16.94
  • 2014 - $16.68
  • 2013 - $16.41
  • 2012 - $15.33
  • 2011 - $14.65

Fees

Certified Abutters List - $25 per parcel 

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