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Old 02-22-2012, 11:01 AM
 
Location: Charlotte, NC
554 posts, read 1,316,342 times
Reputation: 286

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Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeyKid View Post
The outrage is understandable, but everyone is dealing with this nationally - people are not going to "stop buying in Union County" due to this issue alone. There may be other reasons, but "higher taxes" is pandemic at this point... these counties cannot maintain the same level of services without the revenue. Heck, just about every county nationally is cutting at the current revenue levels and you're proposing to give them less money. Sure, you paid less then the assessed value, but so has everyone else who has bought in 2009, 2010, 2011... Why do you get a break for new recent construction and everyone else has to stay at the 2008 level? It's simply not fair on all sides. I get it. But assessed value has never equated to market value in any way, shape, or form. Any decent RE agent worth their salt will explain this to you.

So take a step back and look at it like a pool of money - we're all contributing to this pool to maintain the county services. So if you're going to follow through with your idea and lower contributions for a subset of folks who bought post2008, what do you do for the rest of the county? This is the legal sticking point that you won't be able to hurdle.

In the end we have to wait until UC does their revals officially. Meck county recently went through a reval (many threads on it in this very forum) where it was a debate on things like keeping "rate neutral"... It's a game - by keeping rates neutral and succumbing to the deflated house values, the math simply doesn't work. So in the end, they'll be forced to keep the inflated assessment or raise rates (or some hybrid). Look at NY, CA, FL, etc - perfect examples of how bad it is nationally... folks in these states have dealt with 4,5,6..10+% tax rate increases over the past several years each year cumulatively and people are flipping out ready to form lynch mobs to the public sector.
Thanks Mikeykid. I was hoping you were going to comment on my thread because I remembered that you came from NY and are now in Union County too. I agree, if it's whats needed to keep up with the infrastructure then okay....I just wished that I had a more accurate tax assessment when we bought the house. When you think your mortgage is going to be one price and then you get a "nice surprise" in the mail to find out that it's going to be $200 more a month you feel abused..... It's a good thing we can make the payments since we were smart about our budget when we were buying....
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Old 02-22-2012, 11:08 AM
 
Location: Sherrills Ford, NC
72 posts, read 162,020 times
Reputation: 194
As a Union County native, jlat & getatag have hit the nail on the head perfectly about the tax issues in Union County.

Just to add a little context, when I graduated from Piedmont High in 1999, there were 5 HS in the county (Piedmont, Sun Valley, Parkwood, Monroe, & Forest Hills). Now, I think there are 11 high schools. The cost of building these schools alone combined with sewer/ utility/ other infrastructure needs isn't cheap.

The tax base is 85% residential to 15% commercial. The increased need for services can't be passed on to businesses b/c right now there simply aren't enough of them. I think Union County leaders are working to address this (I have noticed a lot more commercial growth in Indian Trail/ 74 Corridor over the past 5 years, but it will take time).

Union County was until the 1990's a rural county full of farms and chicken houses. As Southern Mecklenburg County filled up, people moved out to Union County for better schools and better real estate. The 2000's only amplified that until the recession hit.

Today, Union County is basically 3 counties. Western Union (which for all intents and purposes might as well be part of Mecklenburg outside the school system). Western Union is a true bedroom community in the sense most of the residents work and spend most of their money in Mecklenburg County. Monroe, "the old Union County," which now has a large Hispanic population, and Eastern Union County, which is still rural farms.

No other county in the Charlotte metro is so dependent upon Mecklenburg County economically as is Union County. Gaston, Lincoln, Cabarrus, Iredell, York, etc. all have had larger pre-existing industrial bases. Union County never had the textile base these other counties historically had.

Anyways, enough history. Point is, the things that made Union County prime for so much residential growth over the past 20 years are now inevitably leading to some major growing pains. The only recourse local government sees in the short-term is to raise property taxes. And they ain't going to back down w/o a fight.

I know b/c I've dealt with them. It took me 2 years and $1,000 in lawyers fees to get my 40 acres in the New Salem/ Marshville area in a farm-deferrment program. And that fight really was over land "that's just holding the world together," not an estate lot in Weddington.

All property owners in Union County are feeling the pinch, though. And while it puts a pinch on everyone, tax reassessments are being done in almost every county in NC (though not as high as Union). I currently live in Catawba County, and the property tax on my home went up about 15% since 2009. However, the taxes on my "raw" land in Union have went up over 100% since 2004.

And while I empathize with everyone dealing with this, at least you are getting services from the higher taxes. People in the eastern part of Union like my grandmother on a fixed income aren't seeing anything development wise but still are being told their land values are going up (they're not).

So, in my opinion, you are probably justified in the way you feel about your tax assessment, but I think it will be very hard to get any recourse in your situation.

I had a rock solid case for being tax-deferred b/c the land was being farmed and it still took 2 years. The only other advice I can give is to be persistent and not be afraid to make a few trips to Monroe to meet face-to-face with someone from the tax office. Be polite, though, b/c you really don't have but so much leverage and are really at their mercy.
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Old 02-22-2012, 11:19 AM
 
Location: Union County
5,787 posts, read 8,437,630 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AmandaEve011 View Post
Thanks Mikeykid. I was hoping you were going to comment on my thread because I remembered that you came from NY and are now in Union County too. I agree, if it's whats needed to keep up with the infrastructure then okay....I just wished that I had a more accurate tax assessment when we bought the house. When you think your mortgage is going to be one price and then you get a "nice surprise" in the mail to find out that it's going to be $200 more a month you feel abused..... It's a good thing we can make the payments since we were smart about our budget when we were buying....
I was dreading the mailing myself... ugh. Still trying to get my mind around it, too. lol

I suspect we're going to be having some heated debates here when they finally do get around to the revals - they can only put it off for so long.
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Old 02-22-2012, 11:31 AM
 
277 posts, read 581,446 times
Reputation: 223
Quote:
Originally Posted by AmandaEve011 View Post

Getatag - Yes, I think we had a misunderstanding. When I bought my house the lawyer figured out my tax assessment at 80K less. So after a month of living here, I got a tax reassessment letter in the mail it was over $80k more! Which will make my monthly payment to the mortgage company about $200 more a month. Ughh..just never expected this.
.

Is the $200 more per month strictly the property tax difference?

I may be missing something, but shouldn't a $80K change in assessment work out to less than $200 per month.

Last edited by 89quattro; 02-22-2012 at 12:17 PM..
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Old 02-22-2012, 11:39 AM
 
Location: The place where the road & the sky collide
21,994 posts, read 27,293,559 times
Reputation: 9024
Quote:
Originally Posted by jlat View Post
getatag is exactly correct. Sorry about your re-eval but that's what happens here. Years ago, my taxes were pretty reasonable. Then the growth boon hit UC and there was a need for schools, infrastructure, road improvements, sewer systems that needed capping so that the smell wouldn't be bad for the neighborhood that built right across the street.
State cut the budget and that gets made up at the local level. People want those really awesome schools right? For the last 10 years, my taxes have gone up 100% from when I first moved into the house I am living in.

Actually the more people that come here the higher the taxes. UC spends about $1.50 for services for every dollar it takes in, in taxes. Also, there's not a big industrial base here to bring in more tax revenue. Soooo, it all gets pushed down to the property owners. Yes, your neighborhood wasn't there in 2008, but that's not the point. The revals get set by the NC Leg. They set the basic time table and the county can vote wheter or not to re-eval or not. In some respects you might be lucky. Had Millbridge developed like it was originally planned, your rate might have actually been higher. Not saying that it won't get there.....As I was told by someone on this board when I was grinding about my taxes going up 10% every year. "Hey it isn't as bad as where "we" came from..so "we" don't mind paying them. I'm from the UC, so his point was lost on me, but I think you get his meaning.
Bingo! That's it in a nutshell.

Rateables is another name for industry.

Many transplants like it that there isn't a bunch of ugly industry in Union County & don't like the area west of Charlotte because most of the towns have it. Worse yet, many of the businesses failed after the recession started &/or were textile mills that went offshore. This is why there is a great deal of activity west of Charlotte to snag new businesses to replace the rateables that were lost.
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Old 02-22-2012, 12:03 PM
 
321 posts, read 797,544 times
Reputation: 156
We are in the same boat. We just had a house built in Wesley Chapel. We moved in in December. Last week we got the County assessment for almost $90,000 more. I called and got the standard response.....nothing they can do. Like it or not, whether your home was in existence in 2008 or not...doesn't matter.
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Old 02-22-2012, 12:18 PM
 
2,203 posts, read 2,385,128 times
Reputation: 3151
Quote:
Originally Posted by AmandaEve011 View Post
First, thank you to both of you. As you can see, I'm uninformed and coming from a different state doesn't help. As I always do I asked for my family's advice...they own apartment complexes and properties in NY so I thought they could give me some insight. They seemed to be upset about it too and didn't think it sounded right. Then I saw that it's been quite a topic here in Millbridge with many people living here longer than me and being upset about it, then I saw it was on the news....I don't understand how this is a normal thing to do in UC if there's all this talk and frustration going on about it now.

Getatag - Yes, I think we had a misunderstanding. When I bought my house the lawyer figured out my tax assessment at 80K less. So after a month of living here, I got a tax reassessment letter in the mail it was over $80k more! Which will make my monthly payment to the mortgage company about $200 more a month. Ughh..just never expected this.

However, I do have to say that as upset as I am I would feel better to see a positive side come out of this and if it does help with the infrastructure and making Waxhaw a better place to live then I can deal with this tax reassessment...I just don't understand why they wouldn't just raise the tax percentage instead of raising the appraisal of my home to a price of not nearly what it's worth.

Again, thanks for your responses because it helped me understand this better from a more clear picture. Sometimes we get all riled up when a bunch of us outraged homeowners are complaining and feeding off each others frustration.
What will eventually happen in UC is called revenue neutral tax assessment. The assessment will go down on most housing, while the tax rate will go up an equal amount, thereby keeping the county revenue at almost the same level. While this will help many people, it will undoubtedly hurt others. Notably the East side will suffer the most while the West will remain neutral. The rub here is the 3 ruling commissioners don't want to be perceived as raising taxes so they prefer the assessment to stay where it is. If we are reassessed they will be forced to raise taxes to maintain revenue neutral.

jlat, mikekid, joethoma and southbound are all on top of the issue. But like Joethoma said, not much can be done at this point. This county is divided enough so there isn't one fix for all of us. What fixes the West hurts the East and viceversa.

While I personally like to blame it on the current Triumvirate of lockstep commissioners, I'm not sure anyone can do any better. I just know you can't do any worse. They are an especially conniving bunch the way they hid and stalled the hospital negotiations while beating County depts. over the head to reduce budgets. Once they bullied the depts. into the reductions, they went out and signed a 50 million up front hospital lease with 5-8 million yearly payments for the rest of my lifetime. That is all money they kept from the books until they whinned about not having enough revenue to support services. They are still whinning because it will make them look good in the state and nation by holding the line or reducing taxes. Let's face it most people are going to vote for a politician that promises to lower taxes or at least hold the line. Meanwhile the effects of what they've done won't be seen for 5-8 years down the road in deteriorating public services like police, roads, schools, sewer and water, etc. It's a big pendulum folks and it's just begun to slow down on the high side and head back the other way.

Sorry again for spouting off...... smack me, I need to learn to shut up while I'm ahead!!!!
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Old 02-22-2012, 01:02 PM
 
123 posts, read 246,417 times
Reputation: 84
We bought last year and they have our home (which was existing) appraised at roughly $150k more than what we actually paid. I know why they had to do this and it makes sense from their standpoint. I don't like it, but I knew it going into it. Folks around me are assessed similarly and paid more than $200k on their houses than I did in years prior. Look at the bright side, you probably didn't pay all that much for your house that you just bought compared to some others both in Waxhaw/Millbridge, and/or in the rest of the nation. You also hopefully locked into a mortgage interest rate that is the lowest imaginable. Factor in the house cost and the low interest I am sure you can find a way to feel good about the additional $200 per month you have to shell out now. Waxhaw and UC are still highly desirable places to live and my personal hope is that the area continue to grow intelligently and we see the money put to good use! Welcome!
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Old 02-23-2012, 05:29 PM
 
Location: Charlotte, NC
554 posts, read 1,316,342 times
Reputation: 286
Sorry this is kinda late...I've been very busy but I just wanted to say thanks to everyone's input! So much great information! I really appreciate it!
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Old 02-28-2012, 04:36 PM
 
Location: charlotte, nc
37 posts, read 68,784 times
Reputation: 19
we bought in cureton 8 months ago for 114k and the tax bill was based on 175k they go by the 2007 tax values its b.s
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