Assessing Your Property Taxes

Property Taxes

By Jon McCreath, NPI Property Inspector, Emerson, Georgia

In the last few years, most property taxes have risen in step with the increase in home values. But it never hurts to find out if your taxes are higher than they should be. Getting them reduced is a chore that’s worth the effort.

* First, look for errors that may be inflating the value of your house. Check the list of factors used to come up with your assessment on the property record card, which is kept at your assessor’s office. Look for obvious errors, such as the incorrect square footage or the wrong number of bathrooms.

* Because many appraisals are done on a drive-by basis, the assessor may have overlooked defects that could lower your tax bill, such as a wet basement or cracked walls. If you can show that the assessment was based on erroneous information, you may be able to get your tax bill reduced without going through the appeals process.

* Check out similar properties. Talk to your neighbors or property owners to see whether their tax bills went up as much as yours did. The homes you check should be of similar size and age as your own. If your assessment is considerably larger than theirs, you have a good shot at winning an appeal.

* Some localities base assessments on the cost of a home replacement plus the value of the land. An amount for depreciation is subtracted. Others use recent sales of comparable homes in the neighborhood. You might be able to challenge the assessment by doing your own research. A real estate agent could provide recent sales prices for comparable properties.

* Check to see if the assessor credited you with all the property tax relief available to you, including credits for senior citizens and veterans, or any local benefits.

 

McCreath PhotoJon McCreath is a professional National Property Inspections home inspector in northwest Georgia.
If you live in the area, call 404.426.3661 to schedule your home inspection with Jon.
NPI and GPI home inspectors have the tools and knowledge to assess your home.
Consult with your local NPI or GPI inspector for an assessment of your home.

Canada: gpiweb.ca/FindAnInspector
United States: npiweb.com/FindAnInspector

Tagged: ,

It’s Never Too Late to Change Careers

Picture2Tired of the corporate grind or working for someone else, encore entrepreneurs — those over 50 who plan on working through their retirement — are looking at changing careers by going into business for themselves. Oftentimes, this involves starting a franchise business.

According to the Small Business Administration (SBA), one in four individuals between the ages of 44 and 70 are interested in becoming entrepreneurs, and this is one of the fastest-growing groups in the United States.

If you’re a member of this group, then now is a great time to explore your options for owning your own business. National Property Inspections in the United States and Global Property Inspections in Canada have plenty of open territories where you can start your own residential and commercial property inspection business. We offer an intensive, comprehensive training program, and our home office staff in Omaha, Nebraska, will help you every step of the way as you build your business.

Named a top low-cost franchise by Franchise Business Review, National Property Inspections, Inc., scored outstanding with 4.1 stars on our 2014 franchisee satisfaction survey — click here to read the survey summary. In addition, National Property Inspections, Inc., is listed in Entrepreneur Magazine’s 2014 Franchise 500 and the magazine’s top low-cost franchises list.

Ready to start your new career with NPI or GPI? Contact Julie Erickson at 800.333.9807, Ext. 24, or email julie.erickson@npiweb.com for more information.

Tagged: , , , , , , ,

Housing Production Almost Up To 1 Million in December

The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) is reporting that the large increase in national housing starts for December will help lead to future housing production. In December alone, a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 999,000 units were constructed.

Tagged: ,

Strongest Existing-Home Sales in Seven Years

According to the National Association of Realtors, existing-home sales for 2013 were the best seen for a year since 2006. For the year of 2013 there was 5.09 million units sold, which is 9.1% higher than it was in 2012.

Tagged:

Housing Recovery Continues

A recent Homes.com study is indicating that many U.S. housing markets are on the rebound. The Local Market Index is put out to show sales of properties in America’s top 300 markets. This index shows that there were year-over-year gains in sales for single-family properties in all top 300 markets. The report shows that 85 of the top 100 markets saw a monthly increase in single-family sales, while 150 of 200 midsized markets saw gains.

Tagged: ,

Vacancy Rates Drop

CNBC is reporting that vacancy rates have hit a 10-year low, which could be an indicator of future multifamily unit construction. The recent report put out by Reis Inc., a real estate research firm, shows that these vacancy levels haven’t been seen since the 3rd quarter of 2001.

Tagged: ,

Housing Markets Continue to Show Gradual Improvement

The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) is reporting that 56 out of America’s 350 metro areas have equaled or exceeded their pre-recession economic levels. The data is taken from an NAHB index meant to gauge economic levels in various metro areas across the U.S.

Tagged:

America’s Cities Expect Big Things in 2014

According to a report conducted by IHS Global Insight, almost every American city is expected to grow their economy in 2014. The IHS study predicts at least 1.0% growth in 340 out of 363 metropolitan areas in this coming year. That is up from 183 cities last year. Best of all is that 3% economic growth is expected in 69 of the metros included.

Tagged:

Housing Starts Rise in December

There was some good news about housing production in December. Due to an increase in both single-family and multifamily unit starts throughout 2013, there was a 22.7% rise in housing production in December. This brings the seasonally adjusted annual rate of housing production up to 1.09 million units for that month.

Tagged: ,

Franchise Sector Set To Generate More Jobs

A study conducted by IHS Global Insight projects the franchise sector to generate more jobs this year than the rest of the economy. It is projected that close to 200,000 new positions will be created by franchises in 2014. The pace of new job growth is expected to keep pace with 2013 numbers and still outgain the rest of the private sector.

Tagged: , ,