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As inflation raises value of cars, Virginia's personal property taxes rise, too

Depending on make and model, values for certain cars went up by as much as 30%.

CHESAPEAKE, Va. — More and more, Virginia vehicle owners are opening their mail to surprises regarding the cost of their car. 

“People are just now getting them, and realizing there is an increase," Commissioner of Revenue for the City of Chesapeake Victoria Proffitt said. 

Supply chain issues in the auto industry have caused car values to increase, leading to higher amounts on personal property tax bills. For a car that's now a year older, taxpayers in the Commonwealth could be paying a higher fee because of that increased value. 

“Production of new vehicles is way down. Car dealers can’t get used vehicles either. That combined with inflation, it goes up," Proffitt said. 

Proffitt said that based on car data run as recent as this January, car assessments could be going up by approximately 30%, and some metrics are even higher depending on the make and year of your car. 

A 2017 Honda sedan increased in value by 34% from 2021 to 2022. Even a 2011 Ford sedan, despite being more than a decade old, increased in value from $3,300 in 2021 to $4,180 in 2022. Sedans accounted for the largest average evaluation increases, while trucks and SUVs came in at 21% and 23% higher, respectively. 

“A little surprising sedans went up, usually you think of them being lower," Proffitt said.

City council members in Chesapeake approved a tax reduction for this year's personal property tax bills for residents. The rate is a 22.5% reduction from the evaluation tax of the vehicle, meaning the rate Chesapeake residents are paying is 77.5% of the total they would have been accountable for without it. 

Proffitt said that it's unclear if these elevated property tax rates will be present this time next year, but if they are, the city would have to come up with a new form of relief for Chesapeake residents. 

There are approximately 250,000 vehicles in the City of Chesapeake alone.


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