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Career Opportunity

Principal Real Property Appraiser - Office of the Assessor-Recorder (4267) - (123297)

Recruitment: RTF0123296-01071978

Published: October 08, 2022


Kimberly Gibney -

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Department: Assessor - Recorder
Job class: 4267-Principal Real Property Appraiser
Salary range: $126,178.00 - $165,100.00
Role type: Permanent Civil Service What does this mean?
Hours: Full-time
Exam type: Position Based Test
Rule: Rule of 10 What does this mean?
List type: Combined Promotive and Entrance


This is a Position-Based Test conducted in accordance with CSC Rule 111A.

  • Application Opening: Thursday, October 6, 2022
  • Application Deadline: Friday, October 21, 2022 at 11:59 PM
  • Compensation Range: $126,178 - $165,100 annually
  • Recruitment ID: RTF0123296-01071978/PBT-4267-123297


Our Office

The Office of the Assessor-Recorder is responsible for carrying out property tax-related functions governed by the State Constitution and State and local laws. Our core responsibilities include locating all taxable property in the City and County of San Francisco, identifying ownership, establishing a taxable value, and applying all legal exemptions. Property broadly includes both real property and personal property owned by businesses. The Office of the Assessor-Recorder is also responsible for recording documents and maintaining those public records. Over 400 different types of documents are recorded annually, including deeds of trust, reconveyances, liens, and public marriage licenses. The Office is also responsible for collecting any transfer tax due upon a change in property ownership. The Office of the Assessor-Recorder strives to conduct our work with the core principals of professionalism and integrity.

What We Do

Heightened activity in the real estate and business markets means increased demand for the work of our office. Every year, property tax revenue remains the largest single source of funding for the City’s General Fund revenue, representing over $2.4 Billion in Fiscal Year 2020-21. This revenue funds crucial services like public safety, education, neighborhood improvements, and health and family support services. This past year, the dedicated work of the Assessor-Recorder staff to close the property tax roll represented a cumulative value of over $328 Billion and generating over $3.7 Billion dollars in local revenues. This is due in part to strong growth in the real estate market, additional construction across San Francisco, and our office’s efforts in increasing efficiency. In recent years, we have taken significant steps toward modernizing our operations, including kicking off a multi-organization effort aimed at modernizing City-wide Property Assessment & Taxation Systems (Project SMART). Project SMART (System for Managing Assessments, Records and Transactions) is a multi-year project to replace our legacy property assessment system that manages the City’s $328 Billion in assessed property value. The new system will handle all aspects of assessment functions and will be able to integrate with other City systems, specifically the Office of the Treasurer & Tax Collector and the City Controller's Office.

Role description

Under general direction in an assigned area of activity, the Principal Real Property Appraiser is responsible for the appraisal of real property for tax purposes; performs unusual or difficult appraisal work; supervises the activities of subordinate personnel engaged in such work; and performs related duties as required. The position also is responsible for: assisting in coordinating, interpreting and enforcing existing evaluation methods and procedures in connection with real property appraisal activities; making regular contact with the general public, outside organizations and their representatives in furnishing and obtaining information on real property appraisals and tax assessment matters; preparing and reviewing detailed appraisal reports and records.

Duties may include, but are not limited to:

  1. Supervises the work of senior, journey level and trainee Real Property Appraisers engaged in appraisal and assessment work within an assigned area of activity by planning, coordinating and monitoring overall team/section workload and productivity to ensure maximum productivity, timely completion of all work, and compliance with Real Property productivity standards. This includes ongoing work, projects and special assignments.
  2. Applies and enforces existing tax laws and statutes and assessment methods and procedures; interprets the ramifications of current assessment legislation in connection with real property appraisal activities; explains the above to subordinates, representatives of other departments and the general public.
  3. Advises Assessor, Deputies, Chiefs, and Senior Managers in establishing procedures, interpreting legislation and setting department goals. Evaluates, develops and implements policies and procedures for real property appraisal work in order to improve department operations and productivity.
  4. Reviews and approves all real property valuations, pursuant to the Revenue and Taxation Code, SBE Rules, Standards manual, office policies and procedures; reviews developed income multipliers for multi-unit income-producing residential properties and derived capitalization rates for commercial sales; reviews and approves completed parcel management; reviews all lien date progress assessment valuations; and reviews all direct enrollments in appraisers assigned workload.
  5. Resolves valuation problems by reviewing complaint investigations performed by subordinates and by conferring with taxpayers and their representatives in order to determine and explain changes in valuation.
  6. Performs appraisals on complex properties; performs difficult special investigations and surveys related to complex transactions, corporate acquisitions, and mergers.
  7. Maintains accurate, timely, and automated appraisal data, and report status and progress on goals and objectives. Provides status of appraiser production relative to interim and long term goals as requested by management. Verifies that appraisers prepare and maintain supporting documentation and data on valuations. Prepares technical reports, records, instructions, memos, correspondence, progress reports and other documents related to the appraisal of real property for tax assessment purposes. Responds to taxpayer and inter-City correspondence.
  8. Interacts with other agencies and City departments in order to resolve complex assessment issues and implements uniformity of assessment standards.
  9. Represents the Assessor before the Assessment Appeals Board, and/or appears as an expert witness before judicial and quasi-judicial bodies in order to answer questions on assessment issues; makes public presentations; prepares and presents at an Assessment Appeals Board; and consults with City Attorney in writing legal findings of fact. Represents the office at public forums, taxpayer fairs, professional or appraiser organizations, etc.
  10. Maintains professional certification and competency by completing legally required hours of State approved appraisal courses annually. Ensures that all assigned staff complete training requirements and maintain professional certification and competency.
  11. May include additional duties as assigned.

How to qualify

These minimum qualifications establish the education, training, experience, special skills and/or license(s) which are required for employment in the classification.  Please note, additional qualifications (i.e., special conditions) may apply to a particular position and will be stated on the exam/job announcement.


Requires a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university.


Five (5) years of experience appraising real property in a County Assessor's Office, including two (2) years appraising income-producing residential, commercial and industrial properties.

License and Certification:

Possession of a valid California driver license.

Eligibility for certification from the California State Board of Equalization as an appraiser for property tax purposes. In accordance with the California State Board of Equalization, appointees to this class must possess or obtain permanent certification as an appraiser for property tax purposes, within one (1) year of appointment, and must maintain certification as a condition of continued employment. Possession of a valid California driver license.


Additional relevant experience in the appraisal of real property, building, cost estimating, engineering, and accounting or in buying, selling or managing real estate, or in a related area as defined by the State of California, may be substituted for the education on a year for year basis (up to a maximum of two (2) years). One (1) year of education is equivalent to either thirty (30) semester units or forty-five (45) quarter units.

Seven (7) years of experience appraising real property as a fee, institutional or government appraiser, including three (3) years appraising income-producing residential, commercial and industrial properties, may substitute for the required experience.

Completion of a 12 month real property appraiser trainee program equivalent to the City and County of San Francisco's 4260 Real Property Appraiser Trainee Program may substitute for one (1) year of required professional experience.


Verification of Education and Experience:

Applicants may be required to submit verification of qualifying education and experience at any point during the recruitment and selection process. If education verification is required, information on how to verify education requirements, including verifying foreign education credits or degree equivalency, can be found at

Note: Falsifying one’s education, training, or work experience or attempted deception on the application may result in disqualification for this and future job opportunities with the City and County of San Francisco.

All work experience, education, training and other information substantiating how you meet the minimum qualifications must be included on your application by the filing deadline. Information submitted after the filing deadline will not be considered in determining whether you meet the minimum qualifications.

Resumes will not be accepted in lieu of a completed City and County of San Francisco application.

Applications completed improperly may be cause for ineligibility, disqualification or may lead to lower scores.

Selection Procedures:

After application submission, candidates deemed qualified must complete all subsequent steps to advance in this selection process, which includes the following:

Minimum Qualification Supplemental Questionnaire (MQSQ)
Candidates will be required to complete a MQSQ as part of the employment application. This MQSQ is designed to obtain specific information regarding an applicant's experience in relation to the Minimum Qualifications (MQ) for this position. The MQSQ will be used to evaluate if the applicant possesses the required minimum qualifications.

Supervisory Test Battery (STB) - Weight: 40%

Candidates will be invited to participate in a computer-based examination designed to measure competencies in job-related areas which may include but not be limited to: Problem Solving; Leadership; Decision Making; Interpersonal skill; Human Resources Management; Team Building; Communication & Conflict Management. For more information about this Supervisory Test (and a suggested reading list) please visit:

A passing score must be achieved on the Supervisory Test Battery in order to continue in the selection process. This is a standardized examination, and, therefore, test questions and answers are not available for public inspection or review.

Scores attained on the Supervisory Test Battery will be valid and "banked" for three years, starting from the date of the examination. This means that, during this three-year time period, you will not be required to take the Supervisory Test Battery. The Supervisory Test Battery may be used for many other classes; therefore your test score may be applied to one or more of these classes if you choose to apply to future recruitments. If the selection process for the future announcement is held within one year of the date of this examination and it includes the Supervisory Test Battery, your score will be automatically applied to that announcement, However, after one year, you have the option to either (a) apply your test score to the other announcement or (b) re-take the Supervisory Test Battery. Re-testing is permitted no sooner than one year from the date of the examination and only in association with your eligibility for another announcement for which the Supervisory Test Battery is used. Please note that, should you re-test, your re-test score would become your official score since it is the most recent.

Written Examination - Weight: 60%

Applicants who pass the Supervisory Test Battery will be eligible to participate in the Written Examination. The Written Examination has been designed to measure the knowledge, skills and/or abilities in job related areas which may include but not be limited to: Knowledge of: State of California’s Property Taxes Law Guide for Revenue and Taxation Code; and Real Property Appraisal methods and procedures utilized in establishing current value accessibility for all types of real property. Skill to research, analyze, and resolve cases / complaints of complex nature; adopt a reasonable course of action in order to determine proper tax assessment valuations; and analyze systems and processes. Ability to: collaborate and communicate orally and in writing with stakeholders, subordinates and management in a manner that is clear, concise, and complete; interact effectively and courteously with the public and members of official bodies and to establish and maintain effective and cooperative working relationships with subordinates, departmental staff and representatives of other agencies and organizations; extract and interpret relevant information from various sources; to evaluate information and to reach an appropriate conclusion; use a computer to research, extract and process information for tax assessment purposes and enter appraisal data and supporting documentation into the appraisal database; establish professional relationships with people of diverse backgrounds and life experiences to achieve objectives and goals relating to Real Property Appraisals; and participate in the professional development of subordinates through training, coaching, and performance planning and evaluation.

Candidate must achieve a passing score on both the Supervisory Test Battery and the Written Examination to be placed on the eligible list.

Date(s) of Examination: Those applicants meeting the minimum qualifications will be notified of the exact date, time, and location to report to the examination.

What else should I know?

Eligible List/Score Report:

A confidential eligible list of applicant names that have passed the civil service examination process will be created, and used for certification purposes only. An examination score report will be established, so applicants can view the ranks, final scores and number of eligible candidates. Applicant information, including names of applicants on the eligible list, shall not be made public unless required by law. However, an eligible list shall be made available for public inspection, upon request, once the eligible list is exhausted or expired and referrals resolved. The eligible list/score report resulting from this civil service examination process is subject to change after adoption (e.g., as a result of appeals), as directed by the Human Resources Director or the Civil Service Commission.

The duration of the eligible list resulting from this examination process will be of 6 months, and may be extended with the approval of the Human Resources Director.

To find Departments which use this classification, please see Department-FY-2021-22.pdf.

Terms of Announcement and Appeal Rights:
Applicants must be guided solely by the provisions of this announcement, including requirements, time periods and other particulars, except when superseded by federal, state or local laws, rules or regulations. Clerical errors may be corrected by the posting the correction on the Department of Human Resources website at

The terms of this announcement may be appealed under Civil Service Rule 111A.35.1. The standard for the review of such appeals is ‘abuse of discretion’ or ‘no rational basis’ for establishing the position description, the minimum qualifications and/or the certification rule. Appeals must include a written statement of the item(s) being contested and the specific reason(s) why the cited item(s) constitute(s) abuse of discretion by the Human Resources Director. Appeals must be submitted directly to the Executive Officer of the Civil Service Commission within five business days of the announcement issuance date.

Additional Information Regarding Employment with the City and County of San Francisco:

Applications for City and County of San Francisco jobs are only accepted through an online process. Visit and begin the application process.

  • Select the “I’m Interested” button and follow instructions on the screen

Applicants may be contacted by email about this recruitment and, therefore, it is their responsibility to ensure that their registered email address is accurate and kept up-to-date. Also, applicants must ensure that email from CCSF is not blocked on their computer by a spam filter. To prevent blocking, applicants should set up their email to accept CCSF mail from the following addresses (,,,,,,,,,,,,,, and

Applicants will receive a confirmation email that their online application has been received in response to every announcement for which they file. Applicants should retain this confirmation email for their records. Failure to receive this email means that the online application was not submitted or received.

If you have any questions regarding this recruitment or application process, please contact the exam analyst, Kimberly Gibney at

All your information will be kept confidential according to EEO guidelines.

CONDITION OF EMPLOYMENT:  All City and County of San Francisco employees are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as a condition of employment. Someone is fully vaccinated when 14 days have passed since they received the final dose of a two-shot vaccine or a dose of a one-shot vaccine. Any new hire must present proof of full vaccination status to be appointed. Any new hire who will be routinely assigned or occasionally enter High-Risk Settings, must provide proof of having received a COVID-19 booster vaccine by March 1, 2022, or once eligible.

The City and County of San Francisco encourages women, minorities and persons with disabilities to apply. Applicants will be considered regardless of their sex, race, age, religion, color, national origin, ancestry, physical disability, mental disability, medical condition (associated with cancer, a history of cancer, or genetic characteristics), HIV/AIDS status, genetic information, marital status, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, gender expression, military and veteran status, or other protected category under the law.