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Career and Education Opportunities for Assessors in Santa Clara, California

Assessor career and educational opportunities abound in Santa Clara, California. About 8,600 people are currently employed as assessors in California. By 2016, this is expected to grow 12% to 9,600 people employed. This is better than the national trend for assessors, which sees this job pool growing by about 4.6% over the next eight years. In general, assessors appraise real and personal property to determine its fair value.

Assessors earn approximately $32 hourly or $67,330 annually on average in California. Nationally they average about $22 hourly or $47,370 per year. Incomes for assessors are better than in the overall category of Accounting and Auditing in California, and not quite as good as the overall Accounting and Auditing category nationally. People working as assessors can fill a number of jobs, such as: director of assessing, residential appraiser, and auditor appraiser.

The Santa Clara area is home to thirty-five schools of higher education, including eight within twenty-five miles of Santa Clara where you can get a degree as an assessor. Given that the most common education level for assessors is a post-secondary certificate, you can expect to spend a short time studying to be an assessor if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Assessor

In general, assessors appraise real and personal property to determine its fair value. They also may assess taxes in accordance with prescribed schedules.

Assessors decide on taxability and value of properties, using methods such as field inspection, structural measurement, calculation, sales analysis, market trend studies, and income and expense analysis. They also inspect properties, considering factors such as market value and building or replacement costs to establish appraisal value. Equally important, assessors have to explain assessed values to property owners and defend appealed assessments at public hearings. They are often called upon to inspect new construction and major improvements to existing structures to establish values. They are expected to analyze trends in sales prices and rents, to gauge property values or decide on the precision of assessments. Finally, assessors conduct regular reviews of property within jurisdictions to establish changes in property due to construction or demolition.

Every day, assessors are expected to be able to see details at a very fine level of focus. They need to articulate ideas and problems. It is also important that they think through problems and come up with general rules.

It is important for assessors to complete and maintain assessment rolls that show the assessed values and status of all property in a municipality. They are often called upon to identify the ownership of each piece of taxable property. They also hire staff members. They are sometimes expected to approve applications for property tax exemptions or deductions. Somewhat less frequently, assessors are also expected to ready and maintain current data on each parcel assessed, including maps of boundaries, inventories of land and structures and any applicable exemptions.

Assessors sometimes are asked to furnish sales analyses to be used for equalization of school aid. They also have to be able to maintain familiarity with aspects of local real estate markets And finally, they sometimes have to furnish sales analyses to be used for equalization of school aid.

Like many other jobs, assessors must have exceptional integrity and be thorough and dependable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Santa Clara include:

  • Accountant. Analyze financial information and prepare financial reports to determine or maintain records of assets, liabilities, profit and loss, tax liability, or other financial activities within an organization.
  • Auditor. Examine and analyze accounting records to determine financial status of establishment and prepare financial reports concerning operating procedures.
  • Budget Analyst. Examine budget estimates for completeness, accuracy, and conformance with procedures and regulations. Analyze budgeting and accounting reports for the purpose of maintaining expenditure controls.
  • Credit Analyst. Analyze current credit data and financial statements of individuals or firms to determine the degree of risk involved in extending credit or lending money. Prepare reports with this credit information for use in decision-making.
  • Financial Analyst. Conduct quantitative analyses of information affecting investment programs of public or private institutions.
  • Financial Examiner. Enforce or ensure compliance with laws and regulations governing financial and securities institutions and financial and real estate transactions. May examine, verify correctness of, or establish authenticity of records.
  • Income Tax Advisor. Prepare tax returns for individuals or small businesses but do not have the background or responsibilities of an accredited or certified public accountant.
  • Loan Officer. Evaluate, authorize, or recommend approval of commercial, real estate, or credit loans. Advise borrowers on financial status and methods of payments. Includes mortgage loan officers and agents, collection analysts, loan servicing officers, and loan underwriters.
  • Personal Financial Planner. Advise clients on financial plans utilizing knowledge of tax and investment strategies, securities, and real estate. Duties include assessing clients' assets, liabilities, and financial objectives to establish investment strategies.
  • Real Estate Appraiser. Appraise real property to determine its value for purchase, sales, or loan purposes.
  • Tax Examiner. Determine tax liability or collect taxes from individuals or business firms according to prescribed laws and regulations.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Assessor Training

Ohlone College - Fremont, CA

Ohlone College, 43600 Mission Blvd, Fremont, CA 94539-0390. Ohlone College is a large college located in Fremont, California. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 11,083 students. Ohlone College has less than one year, associate's degree, and two to four year programs in Real Estate which graduated four, zero, and zero students respectively in 2008.

Mission College - Santa Clara, CA

Mission College, 3000 Mission College Blvd, Santa Clara, CA 95054-1897. Mission College is a large college located in Santa Clara, California. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 10,154 students. Mission College has less than one year, associate's degree, and two to four year programs in Real Estate which graduated five, three, and zero students respectively in 2008.

De Anza College - Cupertino, CA

De Anza College, 21250 Stevens Creek Blvd., Cupertino, CA 95014. De Anza College is a large college located in Cupertino, California. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 24,677 students. De Anza College has one to two year, associate's degree, and two to four year programs in Real Estate which graduated four, seven, and zero students respectively in 2008.

Gavilan College - Gilroy, CA

Gavilan College, 5055 Santa Teresa Blvd, Gilroy, CA 95020. Gavilan College is a medium sized college located in Gilroy, California. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 7,159 students. Gavilan College has a two to four year program in Real Estate.

West Valley College - Saratoga, CA

West Valley College, 14000 Fruitvale Ave, Saratoga, CA 95070-5698. West Valley College is a large college located in Saratoga, California. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 10,585 students. West Valley College has a two to four year program in Real Estate.

Foothill College - Los Altos Hills, CA

Foothill College, 12345 El Monte Rd, Los Altos Hills, CA 94022. Foothill College is a large college located in Los Altos Hills, California. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 19,837 students. Foothill College has less than one year, associate's degree, and two to four year programs in Real Estate which graduated two, two, and zero students respectively in 2008.

San Jose City College - San Jose, CA

San Jose City College, 2100 Moorpark Ave, San Jose, CA 95128-2798. San Jose City College is a large college located in San Jose, California. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 11,574 students. San Jose City College has less than one year, associate's degree, and two to four year programs in Real Estate which graduated four, two, and zero students respectively in 2008.

Cabrillo College - Aptos, CA

Cabrillo College, 6500 Soquel Dr, Aptos, CA 95003. Cabrillo College is a large college located in Aptos, California. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 15,822 students. Cabrillo College has less than one year, one to two year, and associate's degree programs in Real Estate which graduated zero, four, and five students respectively in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

Accredited Rural Appraiser: Appraisals of agricultural enterprises and rural properties demand qualified experts who understand the complexity and intricacy of modern agriculture and today's rural environment.

For more information, see the American Society of Farm Managers and Rural Appraisers website.

Residential Evaluation Specialist: The purpose of the RES (Residential Evaluation Specialist) designation is to recognize professionalism and competency in the valuation of residential property for tax purposes.

For more information, see the International Association of Assessing Officers website.

Personal Property Specialist: The purpose of the PPS (Personal Property Specialist) designation is to recognize professionalism and competency in the valuation of personal property for tax purposes.

For more information, see the International Association of Assessing Officers website.

Certified Investment Management Analyst: The CIMA offers an intense educational experience focusing on asset allocation, manager search and selection, investment policy and performance measurement.

For more information, see the Investment Management Consultants Association website.

Certified Estate Specialist: A Certified Estate Specialist has advanced education in exactly how to deal with the settling of estates, from working with family members to dealing with lawyers and accountants.

For more information, see the National Auctioneers Association website.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Santa Clara, California

Santa Clara, California
Santa Clara, California photo by Coolcaesar

Santa Clara is located in Santa Clara County, California. It has a population of over 110,200, which has grown by 7.7% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Santa Clara, 158, is far greater than the national average. New single-family homes in Santa Clara cost $196,500 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, forty-three new homes were constructed in Santa Clara, down from eighty-five the previous year.

The top three industries for women in Santa Clara are computer and electronic products, professional, scientific, and technical services, and educational services. For men, it is computer and electronic products, professional, scientific, and technical services, and construction. The average commute to work is about 22 minutes. More than 42.4% of Santa Clara residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 16.6%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Santa Clara is 10.9%, which is less than California's average of 12.3%.

The percentage of Santa Clara residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 43.2%, is less than both the national and state average. Peace Lutheran Church, Good News Community Church and Universal Church of the Master are some of the churches located in Santa Clara. The most prominent religious groups are the Catholic Church, the LDS (Mormon) Church and the Muslim Estimate.

Santa Clara is home to the Santa Clara Unified School District Office and the Santa Clara Municipal Golf Course as well as Westwood Acres Park and Washington Park. Shopping centers in the area include Moonlite Shopping Center, Fairway Glen Shopping Center and Youth Shopping Center.