King County Property Research FAQ
A parcel number uniquly identifies each parcel in King County.This is a 10 digit alpha-numeric number, and corresponds to the first 10 characters of your property tax account number. Parcel number is also referred to as PIN (parcel identification number).
The parcel number is composed of a Major number (the first 6 digits), which identifies the plat or subdivision of the property, and a Minor number (the last four digits or characters), which identifies a specific parcel within a plat.
Use Parcel Viewer
. You can enter all or part of your address, the street intersection, or zoom in on the map and select your parcel there.
Address searches can be performed in several different ways, which depend on the specific application, and which part of the application you are using.
It is important to read any instructional text that you see next to an address input box. Most people who are having problems with an address search are not entering the street number and street name in the separate input boxes that are provided. Note whether or not a street type (Avenue, Street, Place, etc.) or directional designation (SE, NE, W, etc.) is required or, alternatively, must be excluded from your entry.
Here’s a tip that may make it easier for you: you can enter partial information and then select from a list of possible matches. For example, instead of spelling out "Evanston," you could enter the house number and just "Evan" for the street name. The system will search for that house number on any street containing "Evan." You could even omit the house number entirely and you would get a listing of all the addresses on any street that contains "Evan." And if you omit the street entirely, and just input a house number, you’ll get a list of all addresses that contain that house number. Once you have a list of possible matches, just click on the one you want.
If you know a nearby cross street, you can also search by that method. Choose “Search by Nearby Street Intersection “ from the Parcel Viewer main page, or if you are already in the Parcel Viewer interface, choose “Search by Street Intersection.”
And finally, if you are familiar with the property's location in King County, you can simply pan and zoom to zero in on the property you are looking for.
To fix incorrect property characteristic information, please call 206-296-7300 or email the Assessor's office at email@example.com
It will take a little while, perhaps three months, for all the departments that keep property information to update their records. You can use the eReal Property system, info.kingcounty.gov/Assessor/eRealProperty/default.aspx
The listing of the sale is posted each week following the recording of the Excise Tax Affidavit and Deed. You may notice that other tables are not updated until some time later. This is due to the work flow between different departments.
The Assessor's office revises parcel information about once per month. Parcel Viewer and iMAP do not link directly to live data from Assessments, but rather to a monthly snapshot of that data. Thus it could take up to two months for a revision to appear in iMAP and Parcel Viewer (if, in the most extreme case, a revision to the Assessor's data that had been pending for a month, did not go into effect until just after the monthly iMAP and Parcel Viewer update).
If your name is not shown as the owner after three months, please call 206-296-7300 or email the Assessor's office at firstname.lastname@example.org
When you pay off a mortgage, your lender must file a "Reconveyance" with the King County Recorder's Office
. It can take them some time to get this document filed. Also, if your lender submits the document by mail it may take quite some time before it is recorded and fully indexed, especially if the Recorder's Office is experiencing a high volume of documents received.
This can be a problem with new plats, and has to do with the timing of the tax rolls. The technical explanation appears below, if you're interested. The upshot is to look at the Assessor's eReal Property report, http://your.kingcounty.gov/assessor/eRealProperty/parcel.asp?Accept=1&ParcelNbr=PPPPPPPPPP where PPPPPPPPPP is the ten-digit parcel number. It will have the parcel information (but no tax roll history until probably 4th quarter)..
The Technical Explanation:
The Real Property Account database extract (RPACCT) is generally the latest certified tax year (or the latest posted value if they are different). New plats may not show up in the RPACCT extract until they have posted values. They may however appear in the GIS parcel layer and the Parcel extract table. They do have an entry in the Assessor's database.
In general, the tax roll is closed for certification during December and January and reopens in February (thus the "next" year becomes the "current" year). During December/January the rolls are closed for new entries.
So for example: Say it's now April 2009. This means that the current certified tax roll is 2009. Say that a new plat is recorded today. It appears in Parcel, and in the Assessor's database. It does not have a value in the current tax roll year, since 2009 is already certified. It will not appear in RPACCT_extr until there is a value posted for 2010. If the plat is recorded after May 31, 2009, it will not have a value until data is posted for 2011.
Each of the 39 cities in King County are considered separate corporate entities that have their own elected members and govern all activities within their legal boundary. They name the streets, address all the buildings, set permitting and zoning rules and so forth. All the other land that makes up the county is then unincorporated and falls under the jurisdiction of the county council and executive. The Department of Development and Environmental Services, http://www.kingcounty.gov/ddes/
handles the tasks listed above.
If an address includes the SE designation, it is in Snohomish County. If an address includes the NE designation, it is in King County. Zip code 98021 is in Snohomish County. Zip code 98011 is in King County.
We value your input and encourage you to e-mail at email@example.com
us with reports of any problems you encounter or any questions you may have about this site.
Yes. When viewing the Property Report for a condominium complex you will see a section called "Units in this condominium complex" near the middle of the report (see illustration below) which provides a table that lists all of the units in the complex. The table will list the taxpayer name, building number, unit number, and taxable value of each unit in the complex.
| If there are multiple parcel numbers on a single parcel (such as the one shown here in Bellevue), Parcel Viewer and iMAP will show all the parcel numbers on the map. If you select the parcel, each will show you a list of all the parcel numbers, and you can view the Property Report for any of them. Individual units may be all on one parcel number, or they may be spread among multiple parcel numbers, depending on how the condo was entered into the database. So you'll probably want to look at the units in each parcel number to find the one you need.|
Yes. Refer to the previous question to see how to view a tabular listing of all of the units in a condominium complex. The last entry in each individual condo unit listing is a link to a full property report for just that unit.
You can look up the value history for any parcel by using the eReal Property System
on the Assessors site.
The Property Report pages that Parcel Viewer and iMap generate show the sales data that the Assessor's office has in their database—generally sales from the mid-1980's to the present. The Assessor’s Office makes this data available for download
You can also view sales data in Adobe Acrobat PDF format for particular geographic areas in the Assessor's Area Reports
. Sales data are listed at the end of each area report.
And finally, you can go to the Assessor's Sales Search
application to search for and view residential sales.
A parcel number is composed of a Major number (the first six digits), which identifies the plat or subdivision of the property, and a Minor number (the last four digits), which identifies a specific parcel within a plat.
A Minor number of 0000 indicates a condominium complex.
In general, ROAD denotes some sort of road easement.
On many maps, you can still see them labeled with 5555 as the last four digits. We recently changed from 5555 to ROAD, and many maps have yet to be updated.
These can also be designated as TR-A through TR-Z within a plat.
On many maps, you can still see them labeled with 7777 as the last four digits. We recently changed from 7777 to TRCT, and many maps have yet to be updated.
A UNKN designation does not affect taxable land value because appraisers reference the full legal property description and perform site visits to determine value.
On many maps, you can still see them labeled with 6666 as the last four digits. We recently changed from 6666 to UNKN, and many maps have yet to be updated.
The Assessor's glossary
has definitions for many, if not most, of the fields in the Property Report (which is compiled from Assessor data tables).
The quick answer is that the Gross is the total building volume and the Net is the space that is considered to be available for rent or use. So space reserved for HVAC equipment or elevator/lobby use would be excluded from the Gross. The Net is then considered for the Improvements value in taxation. Keep in mind that an older building, regardless of available space, may end up with a tax value of $1000 and the rest of the total property value carried in the land. This is due to a property being viewed as not being built to its highest and best value according to Assessor Appraisers.
The Property Report contains an abbreviated legal description. To get the full legal description, click the link at the bottom labeled "Recorders Office: Excise Tax Affidavits Report."
Recording numbers begin with the year recorded. Prior to 2000 the Assessor would drop the leading 19 from a recording number added as annotation to their Quarter Section maps. So if your recording number doesn't start with a 19 or 20, add a 19 to the front to complete the 4-digit year.
Please use the Value Disputes page
on the Department of Assessments Web site to get started on an appeal.
Unfortunately, due to poor survey control around water bodies, Kirkland in particular, the original conversion of the inked maps to GIS didn't go very well. The shapes you see work for the business accounting functions of Assessments, which is why we use the word 'represent' when describing them. The City of Kirkland
has a more accurate layer as part of their GIS that they developed with a consulting survey firm. In time we hope to work cooperatively with them to improve our layer.
No, but you can see unofficial ones. If you access a property report via iMAP
or Parcel Viewer
, at the bottom of the report page you will see a King County Recorder's Office link that you can click to retrieve a list of any scanned images, including maps, that exist for the quarter-section in which the property is located. You’ll have to look through the list to see if there are any records that correspond to the parcel you're researching.
Images and data that were created before 1991 are not likely to be online and must be requested in person or by mail. Call the Recorder’s Office at (206) 296-1570 for more information.
You can also try King County Roadways Map and Records Center Services
(scroll down to “Plat Maps" on that page).
If you know your parcel number (PIN), you can start with Assessments' eMAP application
.It will return a PDF that includes property lines (and a lot more).
If you don't know your PIN, start with Parcel Viewer
. Enter your address, or zoom/pan and select your parcel interactively on the map. Once you have your parcel selected, click the link for the Property Report (lower left). At the bottom of the Property Report are a number of other links, including one to the "King County Assessor: Quarter Section Map Report." That link goes to the same PDF that eMAP uses.
You can also search for the scanned plat in the Recorder's search application
The Department of Assessments offers both digital and paper copies of quarter-section parcel maps. Most of the county is mapped in this format by square quarter-mile at a scale of 1" to 100'.
- Digital quarter-section maps are available in PDF format through the Department of Assessments searchable eMap web page (search by township, range, and quarter-section; by city name and levy code; or by map revision dates).
The Assessor can also provide a CD containing all the quarter-section maps for a fee.
- Paper quarter-section maps can be purchased for a modest fee. To obtain a paper quarter-section map you can stop by the Department of Assessments, located on the 7th floor of the King County Administration Building at 500 Fourth Avenue in downtown Seattle or call, (206) 296-7300 to have a map mailed to you. Choose option 4 from the automated menu and stay on the line.
You can also create and print your own with either Parcel Viewer or iMAP.
You don't need a map, you need this phone number: 811 (or 1-800-424-5555) This is the Call Before You Dig phone number (http://www.callbeforeyoudig.com/). You tell them your address and they will send someone out to locate all underground utilities for you and mark them with temporary paint. There is no cost to you and they can usually respond in a few short days.
Use the Assessor's eSales
Search System, which lets you search for residential property sales within King County. You can limit your sales search based on property and sales data such as Sales Price, Lot Size, Total Living Area, etc., or search for a single property by entering its PIN.
For a visual representation, iMAP
has a layer for recent sales (last 3 years) that you can turn on.
Easements are hard to research because we don't have a complete record of them in one place. When you use Parcel Viewer
, you first find the property on interest. Next check the Property Report. At the bottom of this table you'll find a link for the Quarter Section map. This map often includes easement lines and annotation that describes them. If you don't find anything here, the next step is to view the Plat map. Go to the Recorders site, http://your.kingcounty.gov/recelec/records/
and find the PDF of the Plat. If the property is not on platted land, you'll have to review the deed. This can also be found at the Recorders site.
Assessments online quarter section maps will show all short form dimensions and survey bearings (these are in PDF format and are generally 34" x 36"). You can enter your PIN in their eMAP
search application, or if you don't know your PIN, use the address search on either Parcel Viewer
Keep in mind the disclaimer that notes there may be errors or omissions on the printed map and that you should use the long form legal description for true property delineation. Using the map and a 100' tape you should be able to get to the approximate starting corner of your property, and if you're lucky, you may find a rebar marker, but if there is any type of dispute, we recommend that you have a professional survey conducted.
And, sorry, we cannot recommend a professional surveyor.
Please contact DDES
Start with the Assessor's map counter on the 7th floor of the Administration Building, 500 Fourth Avenue. The next stop would be the Recorders office, on the 3rd floor. If staff from these offices can't help you they should be able to let you know who can.
King County only maintains zoning information for the unincorporated areas of the county. This page
should get you started with the basics of zoning in unincorporated King County. For information on a specific parcel, contact DDES
Please contact the specific jurisdiction for the answers to zoning questions within their boundaries (here's City of Seattle).
The base URL for iMAP is http://www5.kingcounty.gov/iMAP. To add parameters to this URL, append a question mark — ? — followed by one or more pairs of arguments and values. Some arguments take precedence over others when combined. See notes below for these exceptions. Separate multiple pairs of arguments and values with an ampersand — &.
Valid argument and value pairs.
(In your URL, follow the equal sign with the actual value described in the brackets. Do not include the brackets <>. See examples below.)
- PIN=<10 digit parcel number, only one PIN accepted>
- xcoord=<state plane X coordinate>
- ycoord=<state plane Y coordinate>
- lat=<latitude in decimal degrees>
- long=<longitude in decimal degrees>
- zoom=<zoom level value 1 - 6, see immediately below for scale equivalents>
- mapset= <mapset alias name, see immediately below for alias / map set correlation list, only one accepted>
mapset values (case-sensitive):
mapset=kcproperty "Property Information"
mapset=hazards "Sensitive Areas"
mapset=wria "Hydrographic Information"
mapset=GroundWater "Groundwater Program"
mapset=kclevy "Levy Rates and Districts"
mapset=weeds "Noxious Weed Locations"
mapset=hazards "Sensitive Areas"
mapset=parks "King County Parks"
mapset=w9_proj "WRIA 9 Projects"
The preceding arguments can be combined, with the following exceptions:
- PIN takes precedence over any coordinate entry. If both PIN and lat / long or xcoord / ycoord are included, only PIN will be used
- If both PIN and zoom are included, note that parcels do not display at zoom levels higher than '3'
- xcoord / ycoord takes precedence over lat / long
- xcoord / ycoord and lat / long must be entered in pairs. If only one or the other value is included it will be ignored
Use the following URL and replace the XXXXXXXXXX with a ten-digit parcel number. Only one parcel number can be passed to Parcel Viewer.