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Senior Services

Senior Service Specialists

  • SAREC~ Senior Advantage Real Estate Council
  • Downsizing Consultation
  • Today’s Market
  • Home Fix-up Consultation
  • Proposition 60 & 58
  • Tax Information and referral
  • Trust Information
  • Title changes

The Senior Advantage Real Estate Council®, “SAREC”, was created several years ago to assist qualified REALTORS® wanting to meet the special needs and concerns of maturing Americans when buying or selling residential or investment properties. SAREC offers a specific designation, Seniors Real Estate Specialist, “SRES®”, to identify those members who have successfully completed its education program along with other prerequisites.

REALTORS with the “SRES” designation help seniors

  • make wise decisions about selling the family home
  • buying rental property
  • managing the capital gains and tax implications of owning real estate

By earning the “SRES” designation, the REALTOR has demonstrated that they have the requisite knowledge, experience and expertise to be a senior’s real estate specialist and counselor.

Members offer their clients the benefits of:

  • education & ongoing updates on senior RE issues
  • the national prestige of the “SRES” Designation
  • sources of direct senior Website/Internet Referral clients
  • access to Contemporary Senior Housing

Because America is maturing and over 80% of its contemporary seniors own real estate and/or are buying new properties, the Council provides its REALTORS with skills and knowledge to service the needs of this unique section of our community. Nearly 4 out of 10 property owners over 65 have lived in the same home for over 30 years. The issues facing these clients are unique and special.

Proposition 60 & 58

Santa Cruz County Government

Proposition 60 For Seniors: “Protect Your Prop 13 Base”

This pamphlet, produced by the Santa Cruz County Assessor explains how people over the age of 55 may obtain tax relief by transferring their base year value to a replacement dwelling when purchasing a new home.

What is Proposition 60?
Proposition 60 was passed by the voters on November 6, 1986. It added Section 69.5 to the Revenue and Taxation Code. This Section provides for transfers of base-year values by homeowners who are at least age 55, under certain circumstances.

How does it work?
Basically Proposition 60 allows qualified taxpayers to transfer the assessed value of their original residence to a qualifying replacement dwelling. Without this Section of the code the replacement dwelling would be reappraised at fair market value at the time of transfer. In a sense, this legislation lets older taxpayers downsize without being penalized by higher property tax payments.

Who qualifies for this proposition?

  • People over 55 years of age (at the time of sale of the original property). If married, only one spouse need be at least 55, but must reside in the residence; the same is true of co-owners.

What property qualifies for this treatment?

  • The original property has to be eligible for the Homeowner’s Exemption.
  • The replacement dwelling must be of equal-or-lesser value and within the same county.
  • The replacement dwelling must be purchased or newly constructed within two years of the sale of the original property.
  • A claim for proposition 60 relief, must be filed within three years of the date a replacement dwelling is purchased or new construction is completed.

What if my original residence is located outside of Santa Cruz County?
Currently, only the following counties will accept intercounty transfers: Alameda,Los Angeles,Orange,San Diego,San Mateo,Santa Clara and Ventura. This information is subject to change. We advise you to contact the Assessor’s office of the county you are considering moving to before taking any action.

What if I receive a property by gift or devise?
The replacement property must be purchased or it will not qualify for relief.

How do I file for Proposition 60 relief?
The claim form for Proposition 60 relief may be obtained from the Assessor’s Office and is also available online at

When should I file?
The claim for relief must be filed within three years of the date the replacement dwelling is purchased or the new construction of the replacement dwelling is complete.

What kinds of property qualify for relief under this Section?
Property tax relief under this section includes, but is not limited to: single-family residences; cooperative housing corporation units or lots; community apartment projects; condominium projects; planned unit development projects; mobile homes; and owner’s living units that are a portion of a larger structure, all as prescribed in subdivisions (c)(1) and (2) of Section 69.5.

How many times can I make this claim?
This is one time only relief. Claimants are monitored by the State Board of Equalization in order to prevent multiple claims.

When do I have to purchase the replacement home? What about selling my original property?
The replacement dwelling must be purchased or newly constructed within two years of the sale of the original property. This provides for a four-year window; the original property may be sold before or after the replacement dwelling is purchased or newly constructed.

Are land and improvement values reallocated at the time relief is granted?
No. The land/improvement ratio is retained. The only exception to this is when a Prop 13 base value is transferred to a licensed mobile home. Since the mobile home is not assessed, we need to make some adjustment to the allocation so that an allocated improvement value does not cause a distortion in the assessment.

How will I know whether the sale of my original residence and the purchase of my replacement residence qualify? There seem to be so many technical elements involved, and I would not want to find out I was going to be reassessed when I had depended on Prop 60 relief.
It’ s true that many of these transactions are quite complex. It is best to visit the Assessor s Office prior to the completion of all of your transactions. One of our staff will be more than happy to discuss your particular situation in detail.

Should you have any further questions please contact the County Assessor’s Prop 60 facilitator at 454-2002.

Proposition 58: “Keeping it in the family”

This information, produced by the Santa Cruz County Assessor explains how parents and their children may transfer property without being reappraised.

What is Proposition 58?

Proposition 58 is a constitutional amendment approved by the voters of California on November 6, 1986, which excludes from reassessment transfers of certain real property between family members.

Which transfers of real property are excluded from reassessment by Proposition 58?

The following transfers of real property are affected by Proposition 58:

  • Transfers of the primary residences between parents and children.
  • Transfers of the first $1,000,000 of real property other than the primary residences between parents and children.

Who are considered children under Proposition 58?

Children is defined by any of the following:

  • Any child born of the parent(s).
  • Any stepchild or spouse of that stepchild while the relationship of stepparent and stepchild exists.
  • Any son-in-law or daughter-in-law of the parent(s).
  • Any adopted child who was adopted before the age of 18.

What value of the transferred property is considered towards the $1,000,000 exclusion limit?

It is the Proposition 13 value (factored base-year value) just prior to the date of transfer. Basically this is the taxable value on the assessment roll.

Can transfers of real property to or from a family partnership be eligible for Proposition 58 exclusion?

No. Transfers of real property must be between eligible parents and children, not legal entities.

Can a transfer of real property between grandparent and grandchild qualify for this exclusion?

On March 26, 1996 a constitutional amendment was approved by the voters (Proposition 193). Under its provisions, a transfer from grandparent to grandchild is generally not eligible for the exclusion unless both parents of the grandchild are deceased. However, this does not apply in all cases. The parents’ marital status on the date of the transfer may be a factor in determining qualification for the exclusion.

What are the time filing requirements of Proposition 58?

  • Within three years of the transfer.
  • Prior to transferring to a third party.
  • Within six months of the mailing of a notice of supplemental or escape assessment.

How often can I apply for this exclusion?

As often as you wish, provided that the taxable value being transferred does not exceed the first $1,000,000 from real property other than the primary residence.

What if the Assessor sends me a claim form and I do not file in a timely manner?

The County Assessor will consider non-compliance to filing as a potential change of ownership, which would trigger a reappraisal and a possible increase in one’s property taxes.

What must I do if I think I am eligible?

You may pick up a Proposition 58 claim form at our office or we can send one to you. The Proposition 58 claim form is also available online at If you should have any questions concerning the completing of this form, please contact the County Assessor at 454-2002.