Recently, one of my fellow New Brightonites approached me regarding the notice from New York City Department of Finance regarding her new tax assessment.  She said that one of her neighbors received a statement that her house was worth so much more than last year.  My friend stated that her assessment went down and she was concerned and annoyed because her house was so much BETTER.  I asked her if she was planning on selling any time too soon.  Her response was, "No".  I told her not to worry.  Even though her assessment went down, her taxes willl MOST CERTAINLY INCREASE!  My personal home assessment went down $9,000.  I know for sure that my taxes will go up.  

As a real estate broker, I acknowledge that whatever is stated on your assessment does not necessarily mean that is what you can expect to receive if, in fact, your home is on the OPEN MARKET.  In other words, if you list your house today, the assessed value will probably not be your listing or selling price. 

As brokers, when we list a house, a Comparative Market Analysis is prepared noting the sold listings in the neighborhood that compare to the subject house over the last three, six and sometimes nine months.  It is not scientific, it is FACT.  Your house may have a hot tub or a 50' deck or a finished basement or granite countertops or a double lot.  The customer may look at five houses that look exactly like yours. Those houses may have any or none of the above-mentioned "outstanding" features that you, the seller, has.  You may think these features should increase the value of your home to so much more than those "inferior" homes. Long and short, at this juncture, whatever amount of money the lending institution agrees to loan to the buyer and whatever your house appraises for is what becomes the correct sale price.  

I digress.... If you are facing a property tax increase, you have until March 15 to qualify for tax relief. 

Basic Star (School Tax Relief) - This NYS tax exemption is available for owners of houses, co-ops and condominiums with annual total household income of $500,000 or less.  There is no age requirement.

Enhanced Star - This tax exemption is for seniors, age 65 and older, with annual household income of $79,050 or less.

Senior Citizen Homeowner - This is available for seniors, 65 and older with annual adjusted gross incomes of less than $37,400.

General Veteran - This exemption is for US military veterans who served during designated periods of conflict, as well as their spouses, widows/widowers of eligible veterans and Gold Star parents (parents of soldiers killed in combat).

Disabled Homeowner - This exemption applies to homeowners with disabilities and annual adjusted gross incomes of less than $37,400.

NYS "Circuit Breaker" information - This exemption applies to homeowners with an annual adjusted gross income of $18,000 or less and whose property's market value is less than $80,000. 

Don't wait for your Tax Bill to arrive.  Call 311 today to have an application sent to you or visit  Maybe you will qualify for a tax decrease.  Good luck.

Posted by Joan Coogan on


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