Residential Property Classification - Information

Arizona law requires the Assessor to determine the use of all county property. Residential properties fall under three classifications determined by the use of the property. Class 3 properties must qualify as a primary residence. Class 4 properties include all other single family residential properties (i.e. Non-Primary, Rental, Child Care Facilities, etc.). Class 6 properties include residential properties that qualify as being historic through the State Historic Preservation Office. We will be concentrating on the Class 3 and Class 4 properties below.

Please note that pursuant to Arizona Revised Statutes, penalties may apply if your property is incorrectly classified and/or the correct forms are not filed with the Assessor’s office. The following information is to help you determine if your residential property is correctly classified, how to appeal/change your classification, and answers frequently asked questions. If you have any further questions about residential classifications please contact our office.

We will require a signature from the property owner to make a change to your classification; we cannot complete the request via the telephone.

 

PRIMARY RESIDENCE Class 3

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What is Primary Residency?

As of July 1, 2011 A.R.S. § 42-12003, redefined class 3 residential property from an OWNER OCCUPIED residence to an OWNER’S PRIMARY RESIDENCE.

PRIMARY RESIDENCE DEFINITION: A Primary Residence is your one and only main residence where you or a qualified family member resides. You can have only one primary residence no matter how many homes you own, worldwide. If the property is leased or rented to a non-qualified family member or if you claim a home in another state as a homestead (your primary residence), your property in Pima County does not qualify as a primary residence. A.R.S. § 42-12053(B) lists the following criteria to determine if your residence may qualify for a Class 3 Primary Residence.

  • The period of occupancy each year.
  • The owner's registered voting precinct.
  • The owner's driver license address.
  • The registration address of the owner's motor vehicles.
  • Other appropriate indicators of primary residency.

Who can claim primary residence class 3 status?

  1. The recorded owner of record as found in the Pima County Recorder’s Office
  2. The owner’s qualified family member

Who is a qualified family member?

  1. The owner's natural or adopted child or a descendant of the owner's child.
  2. The owner's parent or an ancestor of the owner's parent.
  3. The owner's stepchild or stepparent.
  4. The owner's child-in-law or parent-in-law.
  5. The owner's natural or adopted sibling.

Additional Information: A residential use property that is leased or rented to a “qualified family member” for use as their primary residence must be registered with the County Assessor as being a residential-rental property pursuant to A.R.S. § 33-1902. However, that residence will be classified as Legal Class 3. In addition to your Affidavit for Primary Residence form, please complete a Arizona Residential Rental Property form 82901 with our office and state that it is for your “qualified family member”.

What is the difference between class 3 and class 4 residential property?

Both classification types are residential with a 10% assessment ratio. The main difference is the state aid to education credit that is applied to the property if the owner qualifies for a primary residence class 3 assessment.

My spouse lives in a separate residence – does the second property qualify?

A Spouse is NOT a qualified family member. A spouse must be on title of the property that is being claimed as his/her primary residence to receive primary residence status.

When are the records reviewed?

A.R.S. § 42-12052(A)(B)(C) Records are reviewed on a continuing basis; however we are required to mail during each elective term of office to the following:

  • Owners with a mailing address outside Pima County
  • Owners with a mailing address different from the property address
  • Owners that appear to have multiple class 3 properties
  • Owner who appears to be business entity
  • Property appears to be leased or rented… newspaper ad, craigslist, internet ad, reported rental by neighbor or tenant

Both classification types are residential with a 10% assessment ratio. The main difference is the state aid to education credit that is applied to the property if the owner qualifies for a primary residence class 3 assessment.

What is the effect on taxes between a Class 3 and Class 4 residential property?

A State Aid to Education credit is applied to properties that qualify as a primary residence. The amount of this credit is calculated based on the value of the property and can differ each year. If your property is already a Class 3 property the amount is located your property tax bill.

If I live in the main house and rent a second house on the property do I still qualify as a primary residence?

Yes, but pursuant to A.R.S. § 33-1902 you are required to file an Arizona Residential Rental Property form 82901 for the portion of the property that is occupied by a tenant. You should also include a primary residence form to ensure a class 3 primary residence status.

If I own residential property in another state how does that affect me?

You are permitted to claim only one Primary Residence. If you claim a Homestead or Primary Residence in another State or County your property does not qualify as a Primary Residence in Pima County. We may contact various government agencies in other states or counties to verify that you qualify in Pima County for your Primary Residence. This may result in a loss of Homestead and/or cause penalties to be incurred in other States if you claim a primary residence status in Pima County. The following states have been known to contact us inquiring as to whether you own property and are claiming a primary residence status here: Florida, Utah, Colorado, Minnesota, Indiana, and Ohio.

My property was my primary residence but is currently unoccupied, do I need to report the change?

Yes. The property can no longer be considered your primary residence and must be updated to non-primary or rental status. Complete the appropriate form for your situation.

 

Non-PRIMARY RESIDENCE Class 4.1

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My property is class 4 and I don’t rent it but my homeowners association says I’m renting, what do I do?

In the past all properties were class 3 and any property listed as class 4 was considered to be income producing (rental). This is no longer the case. With the statutory change in 2011, class 4 was modified to add a non-primary designation for those properties that are not a primary residence and are not income producing. The homeowner associations need to be made aware of the change to class 4 properties and can be directed to the A.R.S. § 42-12004.

My property is not rented and it is not my primary residence, how do I remove the class 3 assessment?

Please complete one of the following:

Stating the property is not your primary residence and is not currently being rented; include the property owner’s signature listing the tax parcel number and date of change in the property use.

My property is vacant and I’m trying to sell. Is this rental property?

No, as long the property remains vacant and unoccupied. When you begin to advertise for rent with the intent to produce income you are subject to A.R.S. § 33-1902(A) and are required to complete a Arizona Residential Rental Property form 82901.

 

RESIDENTIAL RENTAL Class 4.2 - Income Producing

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In compliance with A.R.S. § 33-1902(A): an owner of residential rental property shall maintain with the Assessor specific information regarding their rental property. The owner shall update any information within 10 days after a change occurs. This information is public record per paragraph D of the above reference statute. Failure to comply may result in a civil penalty being imposed. An Arizona Residential Rental Property form is required for vacation or short-term rentals, leased or long-term rentals as well as those properties occupied by a qualified family member receiving a class 3 designation. Any situation where the property owner is not the occupant, this form is required.

What properties are considered residential rental?

A.R.S. § 33-1901(2), "Residential rental property" is property that is used solely as leased or rented property for residential purposes. If the property is a space rental mobile home park, residential rental property includes the rental space that is leased or rented by the owner of that rental space but does not include the mobile home or recreational vehicle that serves as the actual dwelling if the dwelling is owned and occupied by the tenant of the rental space and not by the owner of the rental space.

I only rent my property a week or two at a time during the winter/summer, is that different?

Yes, A.R.S. § 42-5070(F) defines transient lodging or short term rental as “the use of lodging space on a daily or weekly basis, or on any other basis for less than thirty consecutive days. “ As such, the property may be classified as either a class 3 primary residence or class 4.2 rental property. Beginning Jan 1, 2017 SB1350 has modified the residential classifications to include transient lodging, making this type of property no longer considered a class 1 business entity when used for residential purposes.

What is daily/weekly or short-term rental?

A.R.S. § 42-5070(F) defines transient lodging or short term rental as “the use of lodging space on a daily or weekly basis, or on any other basis for less than thirty consecutive days.“

What is not considered a vacation rental or short-term rental property?

Vacation Rental DOES NOT INCLUDE a unit that is used for ‘nonresidential’ purposes such as retail, restaurant, banquet space, event center or another similar use.

Do I need a business license to rent as a vacation rental or short-term rental?

This is outside the scope of the Assessor’s Office. Please contact the Arizona Department of Revenue and your local municipality for more information.

Can the city, town or county place restrictions on my vacation rentals or short-term rentals?

(A.R.S. § 9-500.38 and A.R.S. § 11-269.15) Government cannot prohibit or restrict vacation rentals, transient lodging unless regulated to protect public health and safety to include:

  • Fire and building codes
  • Health and sanitation
  • Transportation or traffic controls
  • Solid or hazardous waste
  • Pollution control
  • Zoning or enforcement for noise, welfare, property maintenance or other nuisance issue
  • Prohibit housing sex offenders, selling of illegal drugs, liquor control or pornography, or other adult-oriented businesses
  • Designation of Emergency Contact

What other regulations may impact my vacation rentals or short-term rentals?

Home Owners Associations, deed restrictions or homeowner insurance policies may prohibit or restrict vacation rentals or transient lodging use

My neighbor’s renters are disturbing the peace, what can I do?

This is outside the scope of the Assessor’s Office. Please contact your local municipality, police, zoning or home owners association for more information.

Are there any other limitations on my property I should be aware of before advertising as a vacation rental or short term rental?

The property must be residential or personal property improvements used for residential purposes that are leased to lodgers, except those used for ‘commercial’ purposes (diner, weddings, conventions, trail rides, banquet space, retail, event center or other business activity)

My property is currently rented, available for rent, or leased, do I need to report the change in use?

Yes, A.R.S. § 33-1902 requires all residential rental property be registered in the county in which the property is located. If you own rental property, plan to rent your current residence, or have leased your property, you will need to complete an Arizona Residential Rental Property form 82901 to comply with this statute. Failure to file the form with your County Assessor may result in a civil penalty. An Arizona Residential Rental form is required for vacation or short-term rentals, leased or long-term rentals as well as those properties occupied by a qualified family member receiving a class 3 designation. Any situation where the property owner is not the occupant, this form is required.

My property is being advertised for rent, but is vacant and I’m trying to sell it. Is this rental property?

Yes, you intend to rent the premises until such time that the property may sell. This property would need to be reclassified to Class 4 and would no longer be considered a Class 3 primary residence.



Residential Property Classification - How to Change

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I received my “Residential Notice of Value” card and my residential property is classified incorrectly, how do I have it changed?

You will need to complete a Residential Petition for Review of Valuation and Instructions form 82130R. Your appeal must be postmarked on or before the appeal deadline date to be valid. In addition to appeal form please complete one of the following:

If I request to change my residential classification on my Notice of Value appeal, does this also change the prior tax year(s)?

No. For prior tax years you will be required to complete a Taxpayer Notice of Claim – Real Property form 82179B and file it with the appropriate county office. Class 3 primary residence requests for closed tax rolls are submitted to the Clerk of the Board, while class 4.1 non-Primary or 4.2 Residential rental requests are submitted to the County Assessor.

 

PRIMARY RESIDENCE Class 3

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What forms do I need to complete to change my property to class 3 Primary Residence status?

An Affidavit for Primary Residence form and a Residential Petition for Review of Valuation and Instructions form 82130R for an open valuation year appeal. Your appeal must be postmarked on or before the appeal deadline date to be valid. See instructions to claim primary residence status for closed assessment years or a billed tax roll.

When does an assessment roll close?

Pursuant to A.R.S. § 42-15153(A)(B), on or before December 20 of each year, the county assessor shall complete the assessment roll and attach the assessor's certificate to the roll and shall deliver the certified roll to the clerk of the board of supervisors. (Example: 2015 assessment roll will close on December 20, 2014 and will be billed in September 2015)

How do I appeal or correct the classification of a property that qualifies as a primary residence?

Complete an Affidavit for Primary Residence form and a Residential Petition for Review of Valuation and Instructions form 82130R for an open valuation year appeal. Your appeal must be postmarked on or before the appeal deadline date to be valid. See instructions to claim primary residence status for closed assessment years or a billed tax roll.

How do I claim class 3 primary residence status for a “closed” assessment roll or a billed tax roll?

Pursuant to A.R.S. § 42-12054(C) and County Board policy D22.10 the property owner will need to file a petition with the “Clerk of the Board” in Pima County. See their website for details or contact information. (An assessment roll is considered closed December 20 in the calendar year preceding the tax billing. Example: 2015 assessment roll will close on December 20, 2014 and will be billed in September 2015)

How do I claim class 3 primary residence status after the Notice of Valuation appeal deadline?

Pursuant to A.R.S. § 42-12054(A), if a person purchases or converts property and occupies the property as a primary residence, the person may have the classification reviewed and changed to class 3 from date of occupancy. The Assessor’s office will accept an Affidavit for Primary Residence form after the appeal deadline for review until the Supplemental Notice mailing in early September. After that date, you will need to file a petition with the “Clerk of the Board” in Pima County. See their website for details or contact information.

I filed a Notice of Claim to change my residential classification with the Clerk of the Board, when will I see the change on your website?

Closed tax roll years will only display the billed information. You should receive a letter from the Clerk of the Board to advise you if you qualified for the primary residence program. Please visit their website for contact information.

 

Non-PRIMARY RESIDENCE Class 4.1 or RESIDENTIAL RENTAL Class 4.2

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How do I remove the class 3 primary residence status from my property?

Complete a Taxpayer Notice of Claim – Real Property form 82179B

In addition to the appeal form please complete one of the following:

How do I change my property to class 4.1 non-primary residence status for a “closed” assessment roll or a billed tax roll?

Complete a Taxpayer Notice of Claim – Real Property form 82179B, and file with the “County Assessor”.
For Class 4.1 Non-Primary Residence – no form is required.

How do I change my property to class 4.2 residential rental status for a “closed” assessment roll or a billed tax roll?

Complete a Taxpayer Notice of Claim – Real Property form 82179B, and file with the “County Assessor”. In addition to the appeal form please complete an Arizona Residential Rental Property form 82901 pursuant to A.R.S. § 33-1902.

How do I change my property to class 4.10 vacation or short-term rental status for a “closed” assessment roll or a billed tax roll?

Complete a Taxpayer Notice of Claim – Real Property form 82179B, and file with the “County Assessor”. In addition to the appeal form please complete an Arizona Residential Rental Property form 82901 pursuant to A.R.S. § 33-1902.

I filed a Notice of Claim to change my residential classification, when will I see the change on your website?

Closed tax roll years will only display the billed information. You should receive a decision letter from our office stating whether or not a change in your classification has been approved.


Please call our Petition Review staff for more information at 520-724-8203.

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