Real Property and Tax Data
The Real Property Lister is responsible for the county’s real property listing and associated assessment functions, supplying parcel-based land information to both land information professionals and to the general public.
Property listing & Tax Information (NOVUS)
NOVUS is the county’s online tax, property, and assessment information database. Use NOVUS to view property listings and tax information.
Tax ID numbers and PIN numbers are two different ID numbers placed on each parcel in the county. Your PIN is a 23 digit number, while tax ID numbers are between 1 and 5 digits. Get a detailed explanation of how these PIN numbers are derived.
Looking to Change your Tax Mailing Address?
Submit an address change request using the Tax Address Change Form.
- No county in Wisconsin currently operates a County Assessor Office. Property valuation is handled at the local level by municipality. Find your assessor.
- For information on appealing your assessment, tax process, and more, see the Guide for Property Owners from the Wisconsin Department of Revenue.
- AssessorData.org is an external website that hosts some basic assessment information.
After a deed is recorded in the Register of Deeds office, it will move to the office of the Real Property Lister where the ownership and documentation will be updated in NOVUS.
Parcel Splits and Merges
When a parcel is either split or combined with another parcel, the Real Property Lister assigns new Tax ID and PIN number(s), adds in all appropriate ownership, documents, and basic listing information, and then sends to the assessor to add on assessment values. GIS mapping is also updated; please note that updates to the GIS Web Map after NOVUS is updated are not immediate. Please see our guides on each, plus supplementary FAQ and electronic real estate transfer return (eRETR) guides from our Register of Deeds office:
- Parcel Merges/Combinations
- Parcel Splits
- Register of Deeds FAQ
- eRETR Guide
- WI Dept. of Revenue Website (for forms and RETR info)
Unsure of Property Lines?
In addition to reading your deed, a survey is the best way to know your property boundaries. Please note that our GIS Web Map only shows approximate parcel lines and can be up to 200 feet off in some cases. First check if your land has a survey on it - recorded Certified Survey Maps (CSMs) are in the Register of Deeds office, while maps of survey (not recorded) are in the Land Records Department and seen online in our GIS Web Map. To contact a land surveyor, see the list on our Land Surveying page.
Search for Property Sale Data
- You can search property sales data through the Wisconsin Department of Revenue’s Integrated Property Assessment System (IPAS) website.
- For Bayfield County Land Sales, see our Land Sales page.
The County Clerk maintains a list of municipal officers.
LLC and Corporate Record Lookup
Search corporations and LLCs through the Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions using the Corporate Record Lookup tool.
Doug Wood from the Office of the Commissioner of Railroads gave a presentation on railroad right-of-ways in Wisconsin with a focus on Bayfield County. Learn more by viewing this informative PowerPoint presentation (PDF).
The County prints the tax bills and hands them off to the municipalities to mail out. The County serves only as a collection agent for the taxing authority (municipality). Please check Novus (tax bill tab) to view your tax bill, and to see the mill rate for your municipality.
Tax Bill FAQs:
- Question: I didn't update the County on my new address. Where can I do that?
- Answer: Submit an address change request using the Address Change Form. You can also call the Land Records office at 715-373-6156.
- Question: I split or merged my parcel this year, but the tax bill I received is for the parent parcel (before the split or merge) - why is that?
- Answer: Whenever parcel boundaries change in any way, the new parcels won't receive their tax bills until the following year. This is because they get sent to the assessor to add on new codes and values. If you worked with a title company, this most likely was pro-rated into closing costs. Otherwise buyer and seller can work together to pro-rate as needed.
- Question: I recently sold my parcel, but I still received a tax bill. Why didn't it go to the new owner? (Also a buyer didn't receive a tax bill on newly purchased property)
- Answer: If the transfer occurred just before we printed the tax bills, ownership was not quite yet updated. You can give the tax bill to the new owner to pay, or work with the title company on any pro-rating questions. We or your municipality can send the tax bill to the new owner as needed.
- Question: Why does it read 0 acres on my tax bill?
- Answer: We have both “recorded acres” (from a recorded document) and “calculated acres” (from our GIS) in Novus, and unfortunately only the recorded acres show up on the tax bill - that means if there are no recorded acres for a parcel (only GIS acres), then it shows up as zero on the tax bill. Please see your property listing in Novus to view your acres.
- Question: I don't agree with my assessment. Who should I contact?
- Answer: Please contact your municipality's assessor. Each municipality hires their own assessor. See the Listing of Assessors to find your assessor.
- Question: Why did my tax amount change for my MFL land?
- Answer: We'll have to look at your specific parcel for your MFL contract, but it may be that your contact was newly updated with different rates. Note that for 2023 there are new rates from the DNR.