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Northern Virginia Counties Set Tax Rates

byTom Branham, Washington D.C., April 2021

It’s the season to set real estate tax rates in Northern Virginia. While most counties are avoiding raising their tax rates, this doesn’t automatically guarantee savings for all property owners.

 

City of Alexandria

 

Alexandria’s proposed budget for Fiscal year 2022 reduces the property tax rate from $1.13 per $100 valuation to $1.11. Since commercial properties saw an average 1.96% decrease in assessed values last year, property tax bills may be lower for some owners.

 

The City Council will hold work sessions throughout the Spring to review the proposed budget and will adopt the budget on May 5th.

 

Arlington County

 

The Arlington County Board voted unanimously to advertise a flat property tax rate of $1.013 per $100 of assessed values. However, several other proposed tax and fee increases could potentially shift the overall tax burden from residential to commercial taxpayers.

 

The budget includes an increase in the stormwater tax rate along with higher fees for water and fire services. There are no additional increases proposed to the Business Improvement District (BID) tax rates.

 

Fairfax County

 

Fairfax County’s 2022 budget includes a one cent decrease in the real estate tax, bringing the rate to $1.14 per $100 valuation.

 

Commercial property owners may see reduced bills as a result of the lower tax rate combined with declining assessments. Nonresidential real estate values dropped by 4.05% on average. Office properties were particularly hard hit during the pandemic. The overall office vacancy rate was 15.5% at the end of 2020.

 

The Board of Supervisors will hold public hearings in April and the budget adoption is set for May 4.

 

Loudoun County

 

On April 6, the Loudoun County Board of Supervisors approved a budget totaling approximately $3.3 billion for Fiscal Year (FY) 2022. The adopted budget for the county and school system includes a real property tax rate of $0.980 per $100 in assessed value, which is 5.5 cents lower than the current tax rate. Commercial property owners must still pay an additional transportation tax of $0.125 that has been in place for several years.

 

The budget will go into effect July 1, 2021. The new tax rates are effective as of January 1, 2021 and will be used for the spring tax collection.

 

Prince William County

 

The County Board of Supervisors plans to maintain a fixed real estate tax of $1.125 and a flat fire levy rate of $0.08 per $100 of assessed value.

 

Although the real estate tax is proposed to remain unchanged, residential members may expect to receive higher property tax bills during the COVID-19 crisis due to higher assessments in the past year. According to the budget presentation, residential real estate values increase by an average 7%. On the commercial site, members are likely to see lower tax bills since commercial real estate values dropped an average 4.5%.

 

The board is scheduled to adopt the budget on April 27.