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Cerritos effective property tax rate among lowest in state

According to a recent study by the real estate website Trulia, the effective property tax rate in Cerritos is among the lowest in the state. Trulia utilized tax records, census data and its own property-value estimate data for the study.

Cerritos residents pay an effective tax rate of .6 percent largely due to Proposition 13, which was passed by voters in 1978. The measure caps property tax at 1 percent of a home’s value at the time of purchase and limits property tax increases to 2 percent a year. Because Cerritos residents have tended to remain in their homes longer than residents in other cities, they have managed to maintain a lower effective property tax rate. The high rate of home price appreciation in Cerritos also contributes to its relatively low effective tax rate.

The City of Cerritos is a no-low property tax city and receives only 7 percent of the total amount of property tax paid by Cerritos property owners (approximately $3 million per year). The City’s total assessed valuation is approximately $8.4 billion. Other cities receive a much higher allocation of property tax of 22 percent or more. About 30 cities which never levied a property tax before Proposition 13 are called no-property-tax cities and approximately 60 cities that levied only low property tax rates are known as low property-tax cities.

“In a recent survey of the community, more than 40 percent of respondents indicated that they have lived in Cerritos more than 20 years. An overwhelming majority of the respondents, approximately 92 percent, noted that they were satisfied with the current services provided by the City of Cerritos,” remarked Cerritos Mayor George Ray. “The level of service provided to our residents is undoubtedly a contributing factor as to why so many of them have chosen to live in our City for so many years, which in turn has played a major role in why our effective property tax rate is so low. The superlative level of services also has contributed to the strong local housing market.”