Frequently Asked Questions
- When are real estate and personal property taxes due?
- What is a mill levy?
- How are taxes calculated?
- What are "specials"?
- How does the tax foreclosure process work?
- Can I pay real estate and personal property taxes with my credit card?
- Can I make partial payments for real estate/personal property tax?
- What kind of financial assistance is offered to seniors or low income taxpayers?
- How do I protest my taxes?
- What if I'm late paying my real estate/personal property taxes?
When are real estate and personal property taxes due?
Statements are mailed out each year in November. The first half, or full amount, is due by December 20. The second half is then due on May 10 of the following year. If you miss the December 20 deadline, interest will be charged.
A mill is the amount charged per thousand dollars of assessed value to calculate ad valorem taxes. It is determined each year according to the budgets established by the taxing districts.
Real estate taxes on residential properties are calculated by taking a percentage of the appraised property value and multiplying that figure by the mill levy for the appropriate taxing district(s). Then divide by 1000, since the mill levy is calculated per $1000 of assessed value.
Specials are additional assessments charged against real property for improvements to the immediate area; this could include streets, sewers, sidewalks and more. Specials are normally added to the real property tax bill for 10 to 15 years, unless they were prepaid.
How does the tax foreclosure process work?
Properties with delinquent taxes of 3 1/2 years are eligible to be sold at a public auction to the highest bidder. A sale date will be determined at least 30 days prior to any sale. There are usually three sales each year; the sale dates and listings of properties to be sold will be published in a daily newspaper designated by Sedgwick County. Currently, that publication is the The Derby Informer. Listings will also be available in the Treasurer's Office after publication. Properties may be pulled from the sale if owner, heirs or lien holder of record pays in full all delinquent taxes, interest and court fees prior to the actual day of auction.
Can I pay real estate and personal property taxes with a credit card?
Currently, we accept credit card payments online and at the Ruffin Building 100 N. Broadway, Ste. 100 Wichita, KS 67202 for real and personal property taxes. After you find your property using the search function, you will have the option to pay online.
Can I make partial payments for real estate/personal property tax?
You may make partial payments on real and personal property taxes unless the real estate has been chosen for foreclosure sale. Once real estate is selected for foreclosure, all taxes, interest and court fees must be paid in full to pull the property out of foreclosure. Be aware that interest will accrue on any unpaid balance as allowed by law. You will be unable to renew vehicle tags until your delinquent personal property tax is paid in full.
What kind of financial assistance is offered to seniors or low income taxpayers?
The only official program offered in Kansas for low-income or elderly taxpayers is the Homestead Program. This is a state-funded program; contact the State Homestead department at 1-785-368-8222 to see if you qualify or to file.
If you feel the value placed on your property is too high, you have two opportunities to appeal the valuation. The best time is soon after you receive the valuation notice from the Sedgwick County Appraiser. You'll have 30 days from the date the notice was mailed to appeal; instructions for the process are included with your valuation notice. If you miss the 30 day deadline, the second chance to appeal is at the time you pay the tax. While you must pay the first half due, you may file a protest at that time. Protest forms are available by clicking here. If a mortgage company pays your tax, you have until January 31 to file a protest in the Treasurer's Office.
What if I'm late paying my real estate/personal property taxes?
Real estate or personal property taxes not paid by December 20 are considered delinquent. Interest is added after the 20th of each month at 8 percent per annum in 2009, 7 percent per annum in 2010 and 7 percent per annum in 2011.
For real estate, interest is calculated on the first half only; you may pay the the first half plus interest due until May 10. After May 10, the full amount plus interest must be paid. Delinquent real estate information is published in August.
For personal property, if the first half is not paid by December 20, the full amount becomes due plus monthly interest. You can no longer pay half if the first half was not paid before December 20. Delinquent personal property taxes are published in October, and become Sheriff's warrants on April 21. If still unpaid, they become Court warrants on October 1. Delinquent personal taxes stay on the tax roll for 20 years.