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I have to give the tax assessor a number for my 750's market value. I can't do this very well from asking prices. Any advice about how to put the lowest valuation on it for the tax assessor? Otherwise, the assessor's office will decide for themselves. Thanks for any input. Unfortunately, I'm in California.
Are you just now registering for the first time and that is why you are needing this? In other words you have had just a box of parts, now that it is actually a "vehicle" or form of "transportation" you have to pay sales/registration tax? Can you simply add up your receipts I wonder?
I bought the completed airplane in May of 2013 in Arizona where I kept it until June 21 when I flew it to San Diego for repairs, which are just now about done. I registered the airplane in Arizona for 2014, and planned to return it to AZ when repairs were finished. I've decided to keep it in CA now, so I have to pay property tax to the County of San Diego. Their form requires a valuation; otherwise they will value it. I need to value it so they don't overcharge me. As y'all know, no two 750's are alike, so comparable valuations are hard to find, as well as statistics that reflect actual sales and the features each airplane does and doesn't have.
They can not justify assessing it for any more than you paid for it. I would use that as my starting value. That said I would then depreciate the airplane using a 7 year life based on the IRS MACRS system. This would decrease the value by 17.85% for 2013 and by 23.47% for 2014. I would think you could get them to accept this. Might be worth visiting with an accountant out there.
I think this is why the back pages of AOPA Pilot and EAA Sport Aviation always have advertistments for Delaware Corporations. California and a few other states have annual personal property taxes and the Delaware Corporation is a means of avoiding the tax.
In Minnesota where I live there is sales tax on aircraft. When a new homebuilt aircraft is registered the Minnesota Department of Revenue will send you a letter demanding that you pay "use tax" on your new aircraft. They are looking to collect sales tax on the cost of the kit, engine, prop, and avionics. You can loose a lot of other receipts as long as you have these items. Minnesota also has an annual registration tax on aircraft but it's nowhere near as expensive as the California's county personal property taxes.
How did you end up coming up with the assessed value Wayne?
First, I emailed this guy: http://aeromarinetaxpros.com/landing/?page_id=51
Then I got a range of "valuations" from the Internet, noting that they were ASKING prices, then I described my aircraft in writing which I took to the assessor with three "comparable" asking prices printed from the Internet. They used the low one, but it still cost me several hundred dollars. I'm glad I talked to Alston.