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Re: Property Taxes will increase as Jersey City introduces $507 Million budget
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As I wrote on another tread, there were tons of people, the video doesn't capture the crowd. Coming to the next meetings is CRUCIAL to be heard and also because this Jan 27 was just a temporary appropriation, the tax budget will be voted in stone end of Feb. See Jan 27 tread for more information.

PLEASE REMEMBER TO ATTEND THE NEXT TWO MEETINGS AND TO SPEAK BEFORE THEY VOTE !

Posted on: 2010/1/29 1:26
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Re: Property Taxes will increase as Jersey City introduces $507 Million budget
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Posted on: 2010/1/28 16:10
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Re: Property Taxes will increase as Jersey City introduces $507 Million budget
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jc38wayne wrote:
Project in question is Crescent Court and I don't believe they are part of a Pilot program. Sales agent told me purchase price or deed price would be assessed value since tax assessor has nothing else to go buy and he said the taxes would be calculated at 1.6% of the purchase price. I've heard folks say the increase would be 30% which would take the 1.6 to 2.08 but this does not compute for me to a $800 per $100000 "assessed" value increase. Sorry not trying to be difficult...just want to have my facts before making such a large purchase/living decision.
i might be wrong, but what you are describing is a pilot ... i would not rely on the broker/salesperson, but would turn to the county tax assessor to make sure that you have the right information ...

Posted on: 2010/1/27 21:15
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Re: Property Taxes will increase as Jersey City introduces $507 Million budget
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djh101 wrote:
Don't know why the omniscient Webmaster deleted this post from a little while ago, but here goes again.......

Just curious --- is anyone withholding any part of their February 1 property tax payment? Paying absolutely nothing would be shortsighted since you?ll end up screwing yourself, despite the righteous public indignation.

I?m absolutely making my tax payment, but I?m considering holding back just the amount of the increase. I don?t know ---- still thinking about it.
i thought of doing that ... but i have learned that the city, although very inefficiently run, will very quickly put a tax lien on the property and then generously add interest payments to the taxes that you have defaulted on ... while i support the idea, the legal risks far outweigh the point i/we am/are attempting to make ...

Posted on: 2010/1/27 21:11
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Re: Property Taxes will increase as Jersey City introduces $507 Million budget
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Don't know why the omniscient Webmaster deleted this post from a little while ago, but here goes again.......

Just curious --- is anyone withholding any part of their February 1 property tax payment? Paying absolutely nothing would be shortsighted since you?ll end up screwing yourself, despite the righteous public indignation.

I?m absolutely making my tax payment, but I?m considering holding back just the amount of the increase. I don?t know ---- still thinking about it.

Posted on: 2010/1/27 20:55
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I have been serving as a translator of sorts for my gf who's job is to do revals (appraise an entire town) and I think support the commissioner when home owners appeal their revaluation/assessment. I need her to get a UN and PW here as I am not the expert, she is. I learned a lot from her and posted it here to try to help people who seemed to be going astray and could have lost their appeal. Basically i dont want to potentially post something incorrect, especially if people are making big decisions like this.

My understanding per the post i referenced is that the assessed price starts as the fair market price when a reval is done (done a long time ago for JC). As the real estate values change a ratio is calculated by the tax assessor that basically converts the current fair market values to the old scale so they all jive with when the assessment was last done, at least that is what i understood from her. This ratio is calculated once a year and published online. Sales may or may not be the fair market value, and if you are following me unless a reval is done the assessed value is not the fair market value (right now it is a fraction of that). My condo was actually marked as not usable for a comp by the tax assessor, maybe because i got pre-construction pricing? I dont know, but my sales price is not my fair market value and it is also not the assessed value. Both of these can be computed and may even be available online if there is a previous owner. I hope i didnt misstate any of that and as i mentioned i am going to back out of providing any more technical direction here. Good luck

Posted on: 2010/1/27 18:46
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Re: Property Taxes will increase as Jersey City introduces $507 Million budget
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Project in question is Crescent Court and I don't believe they are part of a Pilot program. Sales agent told me purchase price or deed price would be assessed value since tax assessor has nothing else to go buy and he said the taxes would be calculated at 1.6% of the purchase price. I've heard folks say the increase would be 30% which would take the 1.6 to 2.08 but this does not compute for me to a $800 per $100000 "assessed" value increase. Sorry not trying to be difficult...just want to have my facts before making such a large purchase/living decision.

Posted on: 2010/1/27 18:11
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Re: Property Taxes will increase as Jersey City introduces $507 Million budget
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jc38wayne wrote:
Any thoughts on how this impacts people looking to buy into downtown JC? Are the taxes being advertised for new properties going to go up the same way i.e. $800 for every $100000 assessed? For new homes, sales agent told me sale price is assessed price, can any one confirm?


If it is not subject to a PILOT it is going to be subject to any tax increase. Sale price is not the assessed price...see my post here explaining (start at the 3rd para):

http://jclist.com/modules/newbb/viewt ... id=231210#forumpost231210

Posted on: 2010/1/27 17:49
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Re: Property Taxes will increase as Jersey City introduces $507 Million budget
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jc38wayne wrote:
Any thoughts on how this impacts people looking to buy into downtown JC? Are the taxes being advertised for new properties going to go up the same way i.e. $800 for every $100000 assessed? For new homes, sales agent told me sale price is assessed price, can any one confirm?


I can tell you personally that the despicable treatment of new residents in JC and Hoboken by local governments prevents me from buying here. When you buy a home, you are making an implicit vote of confidence in the state and local governments where the home resides. I will likely forever be a renter as long as I'm in NJ due to the horrible state of affairs. The state and city of JC can hardly stay afloat. Why would I invest in that?

Posted on: 2010/1/27 17:45
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Re: Property Taxes will increase as Jersey City introduces $507 Million budget
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Any thoughts on how this impacts people looking to buy into downtown JC? Are the taxes being advertised for new properties going to go up the same way i.e. $800 for every $100000 assessed? For new homes, sales agent told me sale price is assessed price, can any one confirm?

Posted on: 2010/1/27 16:48
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Frinjc wrote:
This is helpful but it doesn't tell how to select the comparable property to be sure that it will be valid. I guess it forces you to always look for better properties in better locations to be sure, not the best scenario.

Also, not accepting distressed sales in the equation is ludicrous since we all know that it affects other sales. I guess one can not select a foreclosure following these comments.


To know for sure how to select comparables and defend your selections in tax court it would help to have an expert trained in this field. It cant be explained via an internet forum, this is why they have degrees, tests, and 3 levels of appraisal licences in NJ.

Posted on: 2010/1/27 14:48
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Re: Property Taxes will increase as Jersey City introduces $507 Million budget
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This is helpful but it doesn't tell how to select the comparable property to be sure that it will be valid. I guess it forces you to always look for better properties in better locations to be sure, not the best scenario.

Also, not accepting distressed sales in the equation is ludicrous since we all know that it affects other sales. I guess one can not select a foreclosure following these comments.

Posted on: 2010/1/27 3:32
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branpatrobinson wrote:
Is there a lawyer or an appraiser that anyone knows of that has gone through this process. I would be interested in hiring someone if I knew they had more knowledge.


Look at the post below, it is a couple above yours, it is long but explains the process and what you need. You dont need a lawyer unless they are also an appraiser.

http://jclist.com/modules/newbb/viewt ... id=231210#forumpost231210

Posted on: 2010/1/26 21:24
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Matule Robert C
70 Hudson Street, Hoboken, NJ 07030
(201) 659-0403‎

he is an attorney who has done tax appeals (successfully, i might add)

Posted on: 2010/1/26 19:59
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Re: Property Taxes will increase as Jersey City introduces $507 Million budget
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Is there a lawyer or an appraiser that anyone knows of that has gone through this process. I would be interested in hiring someone if I knew they had more knowledge.

I was originally valuated at 49% of sale price, then after going to town hall they 'corrected it' down to 42% when it should have been 35%.

Everyone needs to know about this practice, only in numbers and support will any of us get treated honestly.

Posted on: 2010/1/26 19:30
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Someone mentioned Zillow. It is OK to look at if you want but be careful about using all Zillow data in court. Many times the data is not accepted and that is a common mistake that HO's make in court. The data isnt always correct and it doesn?t take into account NU's that have been marked by the assessor as properties that cant be used for comparables. So use at your own risk. The data should be cross checked with the state.

Posted on: 2010/1/26 17:35
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Thanks for all the good information. This discussion helps a lot.

But...I'm still confused. I purchased an old row home, but my taxes just went up more than 2X in the last year!

Also, we are zoned as a 2 family home, but we are using it as a one-family. Does anyone know how that designation affects the taxes and what it will take to make it a one-family again?

Posted on: 2010/1/26 16:23
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So last years tax hike and this years tax hike will equal 22% ? Right now are we seeing last years 11% and then see another 11% forth coming ? Does the second 11% hike still have to get voted in ?

Posted on: 2010/1/26 15:19
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Re: Property Taxes will increase as Jersey City introduces $507 Million budget
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No worries, just trying to help. It was confusing for me to understand at first and i was talking to someone who does this for a living.

Also my lengthy explanation above is for new construction. It is much simpler if you purchased an existing property. In that case typically the assessed value just carries through to the new owner. Your assessed value should be on your tax card and you use the same calculation as above to come up with your current market value.

Posted on: 2010/1/26 14:29
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JCSHEP - thanks for taking the time to explain something i've never been able to figure out!

(and thanks to your gf too).

Posted on: 2010/1/26 13:51
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JCSHEP wrote:
To add to my last post.....My mistake, my gf is a certified general appraiser (highest license in NJ) hired by the assessors. She does appraisals for town revaluations and sits as the expert witness for the municipalities in tax court. Be careful about getting just any appraiser for an appeal. 9 times out of 10 the commissioner will find the comps unsupportive of the homeowners case. I was also wrong, she is looking into/considering providing services for people here in JC as she lives here too.

After a long lesson in how all this works I gathered the following which I hope helps you to understand what you are up against should you go this route.

When you purchase new construction the tax assessor finds a fair market value for the unit. This is may or may not be your purchase price, it is what he thinks is fair market value. Take that fair market value and multiply by the ratio for that year and you get your assessed value. You carry that assessed value forward, it does not change until a revaluation or appeal or an added assessment. Every year the tax assessor changes the ratio or ?equalization rate? to adjust for market value changes across the city. To find out your current market value divide your assessed value (on your tax card) by the current ratio or ?equalization rate?. If you can prove through comparables that your current market value as calculated above is 15% higher than comparables, you have a case. Comparables have to be arms length sales (short sales, distressed sales and auctions do NOT count). Comparables are not just similar units such as 2brs with 1200 sqr feet in the same area. Square footage, home type (brownstone vs highrise), lot acreage, parking, proximity to transportation, proximity to shopping, traffic, proximity to commercial properties, views, upgrades, amenities vs no amenities, etc, etc all matter. For a traffic example if you have a house on a highway your property is less valuable than nearby comparables on a residential street. This is why there are appraisers, they know how to make adjustments.

So for example in JC if you purchased a condo in 2006 and it was given a fair market value of $400,000 then?
Your assessed value is $138,360 (market value at time of purchase times the ratio for 2006?..400,000*.3459)
You carry that assessed value through, so now using the Oct 1 2009 ratio your market value in 2009 is $539625 ($138360/.2564)
So if you can prove comparables are now 15% less than your current market value ($458681 or less) you have a case.

Ratios are posted here: http://www.hudsoncountytax.com/html/RatesRatios.aspx I think it is updated October 1 and in effect for a year?I think.

I hope that helps, good luck.
further to the description above, the county offers the following extensive description of the process

http://www.hudsoncountytax.com/html/TaxAppealFAQ.aspx

as others have mentioned earlier, the core of the process is the correct assessment of your property given the prevailing market value of similar properties in the area ... you may want to use some zillow data as a starting point, a service that does offer some recent information on pricing dates and price data ...

http://www.zillow.com/homes/07302_rb/

http://www.zillow.com/homes/07310_rb/

i would assume if you bought in 2006 and were valued at that time, you should be able to make a reasonable claim ...

zillow offers a price graph for jersey city ... which indicates a 1% drop y-o-y ... for downtown ... 07302 ...

http://www.zillow.com/local-info/NJ-J ... town-home-value/r_273483/

Posted on: 2010/1/26 9:46
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To add to my last post.....My mistake, my gf is a certified general appraiser (highest license in NJ) hired by the assessors. She does appraisals for town revaluations and sits as the expert witness for the municipalities in tax court. Be careful about getting just any appraiser for an appeal. 9 times out of 10 the commissioner will find the comps unsupportive of the homeowners case. I was also wrong, she is looking into/considering providing services for people here in JC as she lives here too.

After a long lesson in how all this works I gathered the following which I hope helps you to understand what you are up against should you go this route.

When you purchase new construction the tax assessor finds a fair market value for the unit. This is may or may not be your purchase price, it is what he thinks is fair market value. Take that fair market value and multiply by the ratio for that year and you get your assessed value. You carry that assessed value forward, it does not change until a revaluation or appeal or an added assessment. Every year the tax assessor changes the ratio or ?equalization rate? to adjust for market value changes across the city. To find out your current market value divide your assessed value (on your tax card) by the current ratio or ?equalization rate?. If you can prove through comparables that your current market value as calculated above is 15% higher than comparables, you have a case. Comparables have to be arms length sales (short sales, distressed sales and auctions do NOT count). Comparables are not just similar units such as 2brs with 1200 sqr feet in the same area. Square footage, home type (brownstone vs highrise), lot acreage, parking, proximity to transportation, proximity to shopping, traffic, proximity to commercial properties, views, upgrades, amenities vs no amenities, etc, etc all matter. For a traffic example if you have a house on a highway your property is less valuable than nearby comparables on a residential street. This is why there are appraisers, they know how to make adjustments.

So for example in JC if you purchased a condo in 2006 and it was given a fair market value of $400,000 then?
Your assessed value is $138,360 (market value at time of purchase times the ratio for 2006?..400,000*.3459)
You carry that assessed value through, so now using the Oct 1 2009 ratio your market value in 2009 is $539625 ($138360/.2564)
So if you can prove comparables are now 15% less than your current market value ($458681 or less) you have a case.

Ratios are posted here: http://www.hudsoncountytax.com/html/RatesRatios.aspx I think it is updated October 1 and in effect for a year?I think.

I hope that helps, good luck.

Posted on: 2010/1/26 4:19
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Re: Property Taxes will increase as Jersey City introduces $507 Million budget
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heights wrote: ............ The old converted brownstones around the Hamilton Park are around a $3k a year tax rate.
i wish - as many others - that you were right about your assessment on the taxes for converted brownstones in the downtown area. i'd be ecstatic if my taxes were that low (or $6k, or $9k, or even $12k) ....

Posted on: 2010/1/26 3:12
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Re: Property Taxes will increase as Jersey City introduces $507 Million budget
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Land is not tax abated, only the improvements. Which is the building. The tax abatement is also deducted from the land taxes.

Posted on: 2010/1/26 0:06
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Re: Property Taxes will increase as Jersey City introduces $507 Million budget
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Below the reolution I cited is another requesting a refund/credit of $70,757.33 for the same purpose to Liberty Harbor Holding/North). Now I'm rethinking these - LHN is tax-abated. I wonder if these appeals were filed by the developer on undeveloped parcels?

Posted on: 2010/1/25 23:57
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Re: Property Taxes will increase as Jersey City introduces $507 Million budget
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I am looking at the council agenda for Wednesday night and I'm it is a resolution (Res. 10-047; 10-e on the agenda) that, if passed, will "authorize a refund/credit of $637,598.77 and a reduction in assessment to settle tax appeals filed by the owners of various properties. (Newport)".

Clearly there are people going through the process and doing so successfully. Quite a few it would seem, based on the dollar figure.

Posted on: 2010/1/25 23:32
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Re: Property Taxes will increase as Jersey City introduces $507 Million budget
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Wouldn?t you want to only look at comparables? I am pretty sure comparables are not just a similar sized houses/condos in your area. What about other factors such as roof improvements, finishings, nearby highways/rail lines/factories, etc. I would think a house that butts against a highway should be less valuable than one a block away. But I don?t know enough about it.

I would hesitate to advise anyone to try this alone without more info. My gf is a RE tax assessor in NJ (sorry, not for hire). I have heard stories of homeowners who think they know what they are doing but fail at an appeal hearing because they have no idea how to properly assess their property and their comparables are bogus. She does revals/reval appeals so i dont know how this ports to regular tax appeals, maybe it is as simple as you said. I will ask and see if i can give some more specific info.

Posted on: 2010/1/25 21:35
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Re: Property Taxes will increase as Jersey City introduces $507 Million budget
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You don't need a lawyer to appeal. You go the tax assessor's office located in city hall (the county also one). Know your lot and block number. There are books filled with recent sales. Look for recent sales with assessments lower than your assessment. It must be in your geographical area. You need 3 sales. Ask if you need help.

Posted on: 2010/1/25 19:27
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Re: Property Taxes will increase as Jersey City introduces $507 Million budget
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Do you really need a lawyer, or just a licenced appraiser?

Posted on: 2010/1/25 19:19
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Re: Property Taxes will increase as Jersey City introduces $507 Million budget
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Quote:

ErinMaiden wrote:
thanks, but is there anyway to do this on your own? city paperwork to fill out? don't want to pay a lawyer, b/c i'll end up probably being flat if i the appeal goes thru....
expect that a lawyer would be charging roughly 1,000 for your appeal and, personally, it is worth using one to deal with the city and the county. the process is kafkaesque ... and while there are people who have successfully dealt with the appeal issue themselves, it is better to have an attorney who regularly deals with these issues and understands the local market (incl. politics) to deal with this ....

Posted on: 2010/1/25 18:45
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