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Home Buying in Delaware Avenue : Real Estate Advice

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Activity 2
Wed Apr 28, 2010
Don Tepper answered:
You didn't provide the location of the house, or a link to it.

One tip: If it's a foreclosure listed on RealtyTrac, it's not real. The house probably isn't for sale and, if it is, not for the price listed.

Please post the link and we'll be glad to help.
... more
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Tue Nov 18, 2008
Kevin Clancy answered:
It is a question I get everyday that makes me cringe. What are the property taxes on this home? I cringe because 1) buyers from other areas of the country have major sticker shock and 2) depending on where the home is I might not be able to answer this question. Answering the question of what the property taxes are is not as easy as simply reading the property listing. The property listing will often include the "estimated" taxes for the past year. Often they are not accurate. They are not accurate for a number of reasons. The current owner may or may not have special incentives such as being a combat vet or senior citizen or may or may not have applied for the Star program. While sometimes it is indicated if incentives are in place in the Listing data, more often then not the data just states the taxes as a number. On top of that the home may be currently grossly under assessed and be located in a town that hasn't done a revaluation in years. What are low taxes now may change dramatically next year when the town does a revaluation. Perfect example, when I purchased my own home the purchase price was significantly over the assessed value. I knew that when the town did a revaluation I would get hit with a new tax burden. Sure enough 2 years later my property tax bill jumped $1,500. A typical situation yet one many buyers don't understand. More important then what are the taxes? the question should be what do you think the taxes will be? This is a question that requires research and expertise and in the end is an educated guess. When was the last reval? When is the next reval planned? What are the current tax rates? What is the current equalization rate? What is the town's financial and political situation? These are all questions that need to be considered. Colonie has long been considered one of the lowest tax areas of the capital district. However, the current audit revealing a multi million dollar deficit may have a significant impact on property taxes going forward. Troy is talking about a full revaluation in the next couple of years. These situations can have a major impact on property taxes. It is also important to understand that just because your assessment goes up with a revaluation your taxes may or may not go up. You can't figure your burden until the new tax rates are released generally after the greivance period. For example, when Saratoga did a revaluation there were homes that increase in assessed value by $100,000 yet the tax burden dropped $1000/year because the tax rate came down significantly. Therefore, keep in mind while you may know the current year's taxes fairly accurately it is important to consider what the mostly likely burden will be going forward after a sale. This is a complex question that is not easily answered. Call me to discuss your specific case. ... more
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