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Property Tax Assessment.....Suburbs of DC
Old 01-04-2011, 07:47 PM   #1
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Property Tax Assessment.....Suburbs of DC

Land value dropped 50% (comparable to 2003 assessment level
Building value dropped 18% (comparable to 2002 assessment level)
Total Assessment dropped 28% (comparable to 2005 assessment level)

A local realtor that specializes in our area reports 10% drop in market value YOY, so 28% seems about right.
We're on a 3 yr cycle and due to Homestead Crediit going to zero, I expect to pay approx 11% less in taxes. It's possible that we don't see any decrease due to the Constant Yield formula. I'll need to study up on how that works. Got a bad feeling the millage will be going up.
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Old 01-04-2011, 07:55 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by jazz4cash View Post
Land value dropped 50% (comparable to 2003 assessment level
Building value dropped 18% (comparable to 2002 assessment level)
Total Assessment dropped 28% (comparable to 2005 assessment level)

A local realtor that specializes in our area reports 10% drop in market value YOY, so 28% seems about right.
We're on a 3 yr cycle and due to Homestead Crediit going to zero, I expect to pay approx 11% less in taxes. It's possible that we don't see any decrease due to the Constant Yield formula. I'll need to study up on how that works. Got a bad feeling the millage will be going up.
Dang, you got your property assessments already? We're not expecting our assessments here in NOVA for a couple of months. From everything I've been reading, property values in the DC area are going up a bit or are at least stable.

I'd be interested in links to local media, government assessment websites and so forth.
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Old 01-04-2011, 08:15 PM   #3
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We paid $3,000 annually for a 1,625sf on a small lot about 1/8th an acre our last year in San Antonio. Our 2010 taxes for a 100 acre ranch, including buildings, was $750. It was up about $80 from the previous year.

This is one of the reasons we retired to the country. The cost of living is much more affordable in some rural communities.
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Old 01-04-2011, 08:25 PM   #4
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We paid $3,000 annually for a 1,625sf on a small lot about 1/8th an acre our last year in San Antonio. Our 2010 taxes for a 100 acre ranch, including buildings, was $750. It was up about $80 from the previous year.
That ag exemption is nice, eh?
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Old 01-04-2011, 08:33 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by jazz4cash View Post
Land value dropped 50% (comparable to 2003 assessment level
Building value dropped 18% (comparable to 2002 assessment level)
Total Assessment dropped 28% (comparable to 2005 assessment level)

A local realtor that specializes in our area reports 10% drop in market value YOY, so 28% seems about right.
We're on a 3 yr cycle and due to Homestead Crediit going to zero, I expect to pay approx 11% less in taxes. It's possible that we don't see any decrease due to the Constant Yield formula. I'll need to study up on how that works. Got a bad feeling the millage will be going up.
Down here in Fla it's a simple. Value goes down 45K taxes go up. Your feeling that your millage will go up is correct and it's not maybe.
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Old 01-04-2011, 08:56 PM   #6
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Methodology doubtless varies by jurisdiction but in my experience the budget is divided by total taxable property to arrive at a millage rate. Then each property is assessed it's pro rata share. If all property values go down the rate goes up.
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Old 01-04-2011, 09:08 PM   #7
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I agree, so what do we need a property appraisers office for? We end up paying what the government needs anyway so why pay for more people to do nothing.

When I received my trim notice this year I called the property appraisers office. I asked why my taxes went up and they said they don't handle taxes at the property appraisers office. My next question was, why would we need a property appraisers office? Silence at the other end of the phone.
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Old 01-04-2011, 09:09 PM   #8
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We paid $3,000 annually for a 1,625sf on a small lot about 1/8th an acre our last year in San Antonio. Our 2010 taxes for a 100 acre ranch, including buildings, was $750. It was up about $80 from the previous year.

This is one of the reasons we retired to the country. The cost of living is much more affordable in some rural communities.
Note that in addition the land is likley not subject to city taxes which in Tx are a significant factor. You only have county and school tax if you live outside the city limits. City taxes add between 1/4 and 1/3 to the tax bill. Of course you have to provide your own water, and pay for trash pickup.
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Old 01-04-2011, 10:27 PM   #9
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Note that in addition the land is likley not subject to city taxes which in Tx are a significant factor. You only have county and school tax if you live outside the city limits. City taxes add between 1/4 and 1/3 to the tax bill. Of course you have to provide your own water, and pay for trash pickup.
You're in Texas - school taxes are usually as high if not higher than city taxes. It was that way in San Antonio. Everyone we know with a significant amount of land (over 25 acres) is outside the city limits so I can't speak to city taxes and agriculture / vacant land. All of us pay school taxes.

We have our own water well, our own septic system, and we happily pay for trash pickup. In San Antonio, water, sewage, and garbage were all in the water bill and I paid on average $50 a month for those services. We pay about $200 a year for garbage pickup out here in the country. The well and the septic have been minimal maintenance expense so far. I think we're ahead on that topic.

You're also in the hill country where land is a bit more expensive. We looked for land around there and just couldn't find a reasonably large tract that was affordable. We wound up buying 100 acres in East Texas, including buildings and equipment, for the price of a moderate house in San Antonio. Prices have gone up exponentially since we bought our ranch. Our realtor said we got the last great deal in this area.

The cost of living is just so much better in this part of Texas.
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Old 01-04-2011, 10:36 PM   #10
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That ag exemption is nice, eh?
Yep. I went to the appraisal office when we got our 2009 tax bill and told them there had to be a mistake. It was significantly lower than our 2008 bill. The appraiser checked it and said everything was in order. The State lowered the tax rates on one of our ag exemptions (pine, pasture, mixed woods) and it made a huge difference in our tax bill.

I always thought tax rates were made at the city/county level. It was surprising to find out the State controlled some of the ag exemption rates.
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Old 01-04-2011, 10:38 PM   #11
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I'm confused. Are you saying your property taxes (county, school, hospital, esd, etc.) on your 100 acres and improvements (buildings) are only $750/yr and you have no ag exemption?
Sorry for the confusion. We have ag exemptions on everything except the one acre homestead. The $750 is for the 99 acres plus the one acre.
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Old 01-04-2011, 11:24 PM   #12
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You're in Texas - school taxes are usually as high if not higher than city taxes. It was that way in San Antonio. Everyone we know with a significant amount of land (over 25 acres) is outside the city limits so I can't speak to city taxes and agriculture / vacant land. All of us pay school taxes.
Yes the school taxes are high, but comparing the county to the city; city taxes run about the same as county taxes which are about 45% of the school taxes. If you live in a city you get another 45% hit. (Talking about small cities here not San Antonio or Houston.)
So its School taxes then county or city depending, and possibly add community college taxes. (Note that county taxes include special districts such as for lateral roads and water quality, or in Harris county the hospital district and the port)
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Old 01-09-2011, 07:44 PM   #13
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Methodology doubtless varies by jurisdiction but in my experience the budget is divided by total taxable property to arrive at a millage rate. Then each property is assessed it's pro rata share. If all property values go down the rate goes up.
I dunno....we'll see, but folks I know that had thier appraisals go down last year paid less taxes. We're on a 3yr cycle and only 2/3 of the properties have experienced the reduced assessment at this point. I don't think they can change the millage only for the homes that have reduced appraisals, can they?

What really concerns me is the effect of all the foreclosures (i.e. no taxes are not being collected).
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Old 01-10-2011, 10:42 AM   #14
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The lender must pay property taxes on foreclosed property, in fact accrued property taxes must be paid at foreclosure.
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Old 01-10-2011, 01:52 PM   #15
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In Texas, Brat is essentially right. Around August the jurisdictions get a certified tax roll from their appraisal district. They have, I believe, 60 days to set a 'Tax Rate'. The Tax Assessor then multiplies the rate times the value and mails you a bill. Most people go to the appraisal district to try and get their taxes lowered, but in reality it is the elected officials that set the rate that makes the difference. Problem there is you have to get a whole lot of people complaining before they reduce taxes/spending. In our county, it is School district, MUD district, then County in that order for highest to lowest tax. Our rate is about $3 per 100 which is higher than it was in Houston. Our MUD district is the reason.
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Old 01-10-2011, 04:43 PM   #16
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In Texas, Brat is essentially right. Around August the jurisdictions get a certified tax roll from their appraisal district. They have, I believe, 60 days to set a 'Tax Rate'. The Tax Assessor then multiplies the rate times the value and mails you a bill. Most people go to the appraisal district to try and get their taxes lowered, but in reality it is the elected officials that set the rate that makes the difference. Problem there is you have to get a whole lot of people complaining before they reduce taxes/spending. In our county, it is School district, MUD district, then County in that order for highest to lowest tax. Our rate is about $3 per 100 which is higher than it was in Houston. Our MUD district is the reason.

The deal is you will have very little luck going to the people who are spending the money... so you go to try and get your value lowered so you do not have to pay as much to these people...



For the life of me... I still can not figure out why people voted to be put in the local community college zone so we can pay taxes to them... just seemed like a stupid thing to say 'tax me at whatever rate you want so others can go to college'....
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Old 01-10-2011, 05:10 PM   #17
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Texas has two 'Uniform Election Dates' one in May and another in November, i.e. general elections. When a jurisdiction/politician has something they wants to sneak something past the electorate, they put it on the May ballot. Normally, on those special interest groups vote in the may elections. That is why you see so many bond issues, and school board issues on the May ballot. And, voila, you have a new taxing jurisdiction!
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Old 01-10-2011, 11:55 PM   #18
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Texas has two 'Uniform Election Dates' one in May and another in November, i.e. general elections. When a jurisdiction/politician has something they wants to sneak something past the electorate, they put it on the May ballot. Normally, on those special interest groups vote in the may elections. That is why you see so many bond issues, and school board issues on the May ballot. And, voila, you have a new taxing jurisdiction!

They tried to get it by and lost... then IIRC got a special election and the voting locations were NOT the same that everybody was used to.... I voted in someones garage... I think there was less than 1 or 2% of the people voting.. I wish we could vote to get out of these entities...

BTW, I do not remember having a vote for our fire and emergency districts... we have a very good one here... and we usually paid $3 per month on the water bill... with the tax I am up to $124 per year and going up... my community college was $176... I also paid $238 to the Harris County Hospital District so we could help out the poor...

My biggest tax is the school tax.... I don't remember what it was, but it was over $1300....
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