Home Buying in Albany>Question Details

romanaderoma, Home Buyer in Odenton, MD

How different are Albany and Berkeley in prices and property taxes?

Asked by romanaderoma, Odenton, MD Thu Apr 4, 2013

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Hi,

The differences are not particularly significant. Base property taxes are the same across Alameda and the difference in the tax basis comes from the cities and local ordinances that have been applied. There are ordinances that have been voter approved for libraries, schools, etc. and this can change the tax rate in different areas of a particular city as well.

The county is portion of the property taxes are the same for all cities located in Alameda County. This county portion is 1.0%

The average tax rate in Albany is 1.3814% with the city portion .1620%, the education portion .2032%, miscellaneous 0.162

In Berkeley the average tax rate is 1.2472% with the city portion 0.0470%, the education portion .1840% and miscellaneous .0162%

This is just an average, but it at least gives you an idea of the tax basis overall for each city. When looking a particular property, it is important to review the preliminary report to find out the exact tax basis and to see if there are any special assessments for that particular home.

Pricing in both cities can vary a lot. Berkeley is a larger city, so there does tend to be more variation in pricing. Location within each city plays an important role in price along with size and condition. Albany does tend to have a lower rate of turn over with less inventory than Berkeley. If you are beginning your search, there is currently a dearth of inventory and lots of competition for the few listings that are currently on the market.

Hope this helps! If you have any further questions regarding the market in Albany or Berkeley, do not hesitate to contact me.

Lisa Cartolano
DRE 01715440
Lisa@LisaCartolano.com
510.213.1139
http://www.LisaCartolano.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Apr 4, 2013
Albany's values are less varied overall when comparing to "Berkeley" because Berkeley has a larger geo footprint and a much wider variation on values. For instance Berkeley is quite different from hills around UCB to the area around Ashby Ave below MLK.

Albany is quite "rich" in its valuations as well; more in line with the higher prices of more desirable areas of Berkeley. Of course, similar dynamic as far as geographic spread of values: generally more up the hill, the more desirable and more expensive. These 2 areas often seem to be tight on inventory even when the rest of the market is not so tight.

Property taxes, at their most basic (1% ad valorem), are similar throughout CA but there is much variation in "special assessments" depending on what exact property you're considering. Each property has to be specifically assessed & confirmed.

Another issue is city transfer taxes upon bonafide sale transfers of property. Berk is $15 per thousand on full value; Albany is $11.50. Typically (but this can & does vary & is negotiable) this transfer tax cost is split 50/50 between buyer & seller.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Apr 4, 2013
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