2 responses

  1. S. K. Graham
    May 16, 2011

    As I understand it, a high (or low) county tax valuation will not impact an appraisal for purposes of buying or selling a home. Your real estate friends may disagree, but my experience has been that my realtors are always happy to provide comparable sales, etc. to lower your property tax appraisal, and have never suggested doing otherwise.

    One comment I found online made the snide remark that investing the tax savings in home improvements (new coat of paint, new landscaping) would certainly be a better investment than paying the county more money.

    In any event, you are still going to have to compete against foreclosures and short-sales in your area. If comparable houses are regularly and routinely available for sale at “reduced” prices, that’s the fair market value. (You can certainly assert that they aren’t in as good of condition, etc. but you’re then negotiating up from a really low point.) And most estimates I’ve seen say that we’ll have an overhang of foreclosed and short-sale houses for 3+ years. So this won’t be a temporary situation, from an appraisal / market trend perspective.

    Recently, I heard on NPR that by one estimate 55% of all houses with mortgages are underwater in the state of Georgia. So it may end up even worse, for a longer period of time, here.

    (I’m not underwater vs. my mortgage, but will likely end up dropping several tens of thousands of dollars compared to my purchase price. And I hope it won’t drop much further.)

  2. S. K. Graham
    May 16, 2011

    On the plus side, if the value drops by 26%, your taxes drop slightly more (assuming they don’t raise the rate.)

    Since you aren’t taxed on the homestead exemption, you’ll only pay taxes on the amount over the exemption, which is reduced by even more than 26%…

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