Auditor's Public Information Officer is Available to Come to You
There are many programs provided through the Auditor’s office. The Auditor’s Public Information Officer, Annie Croft would like to visit your business, church or organization to enlighten Lorain County homeowners on the 2 1/2% tax reduction for homeowners and the Homestead tax reductions for seniors and persons totally disabled who may qualify. Annie Croft is available weekdays and weekends. To schedule an event and have Annie speak to your organization and/or provide informative literature with a complete video and booth display about your Lorain County Auditor’s Office, please call Annie at (440) 329-5243.
Homestead Exemption and Property Tax Rollback
Real estate property tax rollback and homestead exemptions are forms of property tax relief. Every property taxpayer classified residential receives the 10% tax rollback. This became law several years ago with the enactment of the state income tax.
The Auditor's office also administers the 2 1/2% property tax reduction law passed in 1979 for property that is owner occupied. Applications can be obtained by clicking here.
In addition, senior citizens and the permanently disabled are eligible to receive the Homestead Exemption (reduction in real estate taxes) - click here for more info
Under Ohio law, it is the responsibility of owners of manufactured homes to register their homes with the County Auditor for tax purposes. Annually, the Auditor's office assesses each manufactured home and prepares a tax list. Tax bills are sent to each owner semi-annually. The manufactured house tax is distributed back to the local taxing districts (townships and schools) in the same manner as real estate taxes. Statewide there are over 200,000 manufactured homes on the tax lists.
The Auditor's office is the focal point in the county for issuance of licenses for dogs, kennels, vendors and cigarettes.
Dog Licenses comprise the largest number of licenses sold. The annual dog registration is a service designed to benefit the animal, its owner and the community.
Licensing Your Dog
Controlling Your Dog
Immunizing Your Dog Against Rabies
Vendor Licenses authorize businesses to sell tangible property to the public and collect sales tax, a part of which is returned for use at the local level.
County Auditor Additional Duties
Board of Revision - The Auditor is the permanent Secretary of the Board of Revision, which also includes the County Treasurer and the President of the Board of Commissioners. It is the responsibility of the Board of Revision to rule on property assessment prior to the issuance of the real estate tax list. Property valuation complaints are also heard.
Budget Commission - The Auditor is the permanent secretary of the Budget Commission which also includes the County Treasurer and the Prosecutor. It is the responsibility of the Commission to annually review the tax budgets of all taxing districts within the county and to determine that all tax levies are properly authorized and allocated to local governments and libraries.
Tax Incentive Review Council - The Auditor is a statutory member of a council appointed by the legislative authority of a county, township or municipal corporation that grants an exemption from taxation for abatements, enterprise zones or tax increment financing. Annually, the Tax Incentive Review Council shall review all agreements of existing exemptions for these areas.
Automatic Data Processing Board- The Auditor serves as Secretary of the Automatic Data Processing Board by statute. Once an Automatic Data Processing Board has been established, no county office shall purchase, lease, operate, or contract for the use of any automatic data processing equipment without prior approval of the board.
Real Estate Appraisal and Assessment
The State of Ohio has more than 5.5 million parcels of real property. It is the duty of the Auditor to see that every parcel of land and the buildings thereon are fairly and uniformly appraised and assessed for tax purposes. A general reappraisal is mandated by Ohio law every six years with an update at the three year midpoint. The office maintains a detailed record of the appraisal on each parcel in the county. These records are open for public inspection. For taxation purposes, you are assessed at 35% of fair market value.
Real Estate Taxes and Rates
Under law, the County Auditor cannot raise or lower property taxes. Tax rates are determined by the budgetary requests of each governmental unit, as authorized by the vote of the people, and are computed in strict accordance with procedures required by the Division of Tax Equalization, Ohio Department of Taxation.
Annually, the Auditor prepares the General Tax List. Your tax bill is based on the tax rate multiplied by your valuation on this tax list. This is your proportional share of the cost of operating your local government including schools, townships, villages and the county.
Ohio law limits the amount of taxation without a vote of the people to what is known as the "10 mill limitation" ($10.00 per $1,000 of assessed valuation). Any additional real estate taxes for any purpose must be voted by county residents. Your "tax rate" is an accumulation of all these levies and bond issues.
Weights and Measures
The Auditor is the Sealer of Weights and Measures for the entire County, thus protecting the general public from the possible loss which may occur from faulty measuring devices, such as scales and pumps. The Auditor is charged with the responsibility of insuring that all state laws relating to weights and measures are strictly enforced.
Sealers perform "spot checks" on prepackaged items to test the weight of the contents. County sealers are certified by the Ohio Department of Agriculture. A few cities in Ohio employ their own sealers.