Important! For owners of Real Property in San Diego

Important Tax Information for owners of Real Property in the City and County of San Diego

Important tax information for owners of Real Property in the City and County of San Diego

Failing to file certain forms of exemption with the County of San Diego can subject property owners to unexpected tax bills!  Here we discuss Homeowners Property Tax Exemptions and the associated City Rental Taxes.

Homeowners Property Tax Exemptions

San Diego County real property which is occupied by a homeowner as his residence affords the owner a tax exemption. This may be claimed by filing a Claim for Homeowners Property Tax Exemption with the County Treasurer-Tax Collector. Contact the County Assessors Office at (619) 531-5772 or visit the County of San Diego website to request this exemption. 

Case Escrow has also made the exemption form available in its Resources library. This form is automatically mailed to a new owner just after the recording of the Grant Deed. Therefore, Buyers should be on the lookout for the form within the first month or so after the close of escrow.

It is prudent to establish an owner occupancy. The associated reduction in the assessed value determines the basis for property taxes to be levied against the property. This also helps to avoid other associated effects.

City Rental Taxes

The San Diego Office of the City Treasurer obtains its billing records from the County of San Diego. Property owners who do not complete and file a Homeowner’s Exemption with the County of San Diego Assessor are subject to a Rental Unit Business Tax billing statement. If you receive a Rental Tax bill but live in your property, then you need to submit a separate exemption form to the City of San Diego.

The Office of the City Treasurer issues renewal notices as a courtesy to businesses. However, the Office of the City Treasurer is not required to send a notice or bill to any person. Failure by the City office to send a notice or bill does not affect the validity of any fee or penalty levied by the City Treasurer. Additionally, it does not relieve the duty of the property owner to pay required taxes.  (See SDMC §31.0135 Notice or Bill by City Treasurer).  

Frequently asked questions related to the City tax may be found at