The law specifies that all taxable personal property must be assessed as of a specific point in time, and that point is precisely at 12:01 a.m. January 1 (regardless of what transpires after that date). Even if closed shortly after the lien date, a business must still file a Business Property Statement and pay taxes for the coming fiscal year on any taxable property they owned on the lien date.
This job may sound like it is just a matter of looking around people's homes, but it actually requires a high level of expertise. You will need to learn about the new products that are constantly appearing in the market and stay updated with any changing laws. Networking and building positive relationships with your local real estate agents will give you the best chance of success, as they will recommend your services to others in your area.
Where the equipment you use in your business was acquired as a gift, you may report your estimate of its current market value on the Business Property Statement (that is, what you think it would sell for in the open market place). Enter that estimated value in the most current year's cost line and add a note indicating that the entry is an estimate.