By Jeff Prang
Los Angeles County Assessor
At the beginning of the year, my office released the 2021 Annual Report, which reflects growth and increases in the assessed value of taxable real property despite the enduring pandemic. The report also includes an updated listing of the county’s 88 cities, including the highest-valued cities and those with the highest percentage change from the prior year.
The 2021 Annual Report is available online at www.assessor.lacounty.gov/reports.
The Annual Report helps the public easily access information about the Office of the Assessor, property-tax-saving resources and how property values in each area of the county changed during this last year. The diligent work of the staff at the Office of the Assessor during these difficult times helped find new ways to produce and complete the vital functions that ultimately serve as the foundation of the property tax system. The 2021 Annual Assessment roll had a total assessed value of all taxable property in the county this year of more than $1.7 trillion, which will generate over $17 billion in property tax revenue, to be allocated to local governments – cities, school districts, roads, hospitals and libraries to fund the basic services we all rely on.
The Annual Report is broken down into categories and chapters, providing a comprehensive view of the strength of the Los Angeles County real estate market. It reveals that last year nearly every city in Los Angeles County recorded an increase in assessed valuation compared to 2020.
The report also highlights the total net value of $1.76 trillion for the entire county, indicating the 11th consecutive year of growth, an increase of $62.9 billion (or 3.7%) over 2020. That value places $17 billion in the hands of the county to be used for those public services as just mentioned.
The Annual Report also includes the latest information on the new constitutional amendment, Proposition 19, the office’s many legislative advancements, the many tax resources and tax savings’ programs available, a detailed explanation of California’s property tax system, and the new joint-venture with community colleges that provides a pathway to jobs.
Moreover, as the Annual Report does every year, it lists the top 20 highest-valued cities in the county for 2021. The top five highest-valued cities for 2021 remain the same, with the city of Los Angeles at No. 1 with an assessed valuation of $723.6 billion (4% increase); Long Beach with an assessed valuation of $65.7 billion (3.5% increase); Santa Monica with an assessed valuation of $43.834 billion (3.7% increase); Beverly Hills with an assessed valuation of $40.6 billion (4.1% increase); and Santa Clarita with an assessed valuation of $38.3 billion (1.1% increase).
The top three fastest percentage growth cities in the county in 2021 were Cerritos at 9.1% growth, Hidden Hills at 8.9% growth, and Vernon at 7.1%.
It’s important to remember that the average growth does not mean property owners will be subject to a corresponding increase on their annual property tax bills. Nearly 9 out of 10 property owners will see only the modest 2% adjustment prescribed by Proposition 13.
The dedicated professionals at the Office of the Assessor are committed to providing the highest quality of public service possible, regardless of the challenges that present themselves. It’s not an understatement when I say that this past year has presented the Assessor’s Office with an untold number of those challenges but they have been met and overcome as this Annual Report indicates.
Don’t forget to visit our new, improved website at assessor.lacounty.gov where you can find all property tax saving resources available to you.
Los Angeles County Assessor Jeff Prang has been in office since 2014. The L.A. County Assessor’s Office is the largest office of its kind in the nation with 1,300 employees and provides the foundation for a property tax system that generates $17 billion annually.