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All tangible personal property, machinery and tools shall be taxable by the city in any year if they are physically present within the corporate limits as of January first. See details of City Code, Sec. 30-34.

Personal Property Ownership

For a vehicle, it is determined by the exact way in which a vehicle is titled with Virginia's Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). If a person leases a vehicle, the owner is the leasing company. For example, John Smith is a different owner than John Smith and Mary Smith (co-owners) or John Smith Inc. (business)

Filing of Personal Property

New for 2006, personal property are filed by exceptions. If you purchase a new vehicle, etc., or move to city of Charlottesville, please contact Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles at 804-497-7100 to update your title records.

You may be a resident of Albemarle County and still have a mailing address of "Charlottesville". For a list of City street addresses, click here.

License Fee

A mandatory LICENSE FEE has replaced the old decals since 2006, and it is DUE ON FIRST HALF BILL. Reference city ordinance Sec. 15-37. Please contact the City Treasurer’s Office or call (434) 970-3146 for details. 

Rates of Personal Property

$4.20 per hundred dollars of assessed value, except for mobile homes, which are $0.95 per hundred dollars of assessment.


Assessment of personal property will be determined by using the January CLEAN TRADE-IN VALUE, year and model vehicle according to the Eastern Edition of the National Automobile Dealers Association's Official Used Car Guide.

To find out the tax value on a vehicle, you may call our office at: (434) 970-3160. Please have the year, make and model to help us better help you. For more information on N.A.D.A., see the N.A.D.A. web site (Vehicle values are not available online, however.)

The Virginia General Assembly enacted the Personal Property Tax Relief Act of 1998, for more information please see our Car Tax Relief page.

Proration of Personal Property means that taxes are based on the actual length of time that the property is kept in a particular jurisdiction.

Beginning January 1, 1991 both the City of Charlottesville and the County of Albemarle began taxing motor vehicles and trailers using the proration method.

Certain Personal Properties are not prorated. For details, check the List of Taxable Properties.

For a list of localities in Virginia on the proration method, click here.

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