Property Taxes Dropped for People Who Didn't Ask

Owners of homes with plummeting values find silver lining

San Diego County hasn't finished the paperwork but it looks like a record number of homeowners will be paying less on their property taxes. 

Last year, the county lowered property taxes on 88,000 homes; this year that number is more than 200,000 homes.

"We're honestly hoping we have most of the properties down to the value that they need to be this year," San Diego County Clerk/Assessor David Butler said. 

More than 56,000 property owners applied to have their home's value reassessed. In addition, the county also assessed homes from people who never filled out the paperwork. 

"We're probably going to lower 50,000 to 60,0000 people who didn't even asks us to -- just being pro-active," Butler said.

For Rancho Penasquitos homeowner Paul Northcut, that would be fantastic. 

"We bought our house in April 2007, and we've gradually seen it drop pretty significantly in value," Northcut said. 

Northcut never applied for the reassessment. Still, the county clerk said the value of Northcut's property was lowered by $80,000, which means he will pay $800 less on his next tax bill.

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