Century 21 Alliance: Cherry Hill
Property taxes make up the majority of revenue the towns take in to pay for all of their costs. The town takes all of their costs for the year, and develops a budget that divides up all of the income producing methods at their disposal. Things like fees and licenses, building permits, selling bonds, taxes on everything possible, state subsidy, federal subsidy, even traffic tickets and court costs are all part of the revenue generating systems. The biggest (usually) method of revenue generating is property taxes. The town comes up with a number they want and then takes every square foot of taxable real estate in the town and calculates how much tax per square foot per zoning area they will charge, in order to raise the money to pay for their budgets.
Bottom line, if you want lower taxes in the long run, the towns' voters need to be more active in preventing excessive town budgets, just like in the state and federal systems. Otherwise, a few elected and appointed folks in your town, determine how much you pay.
While I have some clients opting for Pennsylvania, some are still choosing to buy in NJ. There ARE communities in the area with lower taxes...
Best of luck to you,
Eric Axelson, Associate Broker
Kurfiss Sotheby's International Realty