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Old 02-23-2010, 08:48 AM
 
Location: Winter Springs, FL
1,789 posts, read 4,059,141 times
Reputation: 925

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Quote:
Originally Posted by RunawayJim View Post
Generally, I think the square footage is the livable space, which usually requires that it's heated (at least that's how it is here in RI). For example, a basement cannot be considered finished here if it's not heated. That means that the space is not living area.

We run into issues where the seller or their agent lists the total square footage and doesn't mention what's below grade. Many will list above grade and below grade square footage separately though. I think they're technically only required to list the square footage of the livable space (again, that's all space that's heated).

I'm with you on older homes. They have more charm, though I do like some of the capes from the 50's. My current house is a bungalow from the 30's. I love it, though I wish it was a little bigger and better insulated, even here in RI.
In Vermont it's very different than other parts of the country. There are many old farmhouses that still to this day only have heat on the main floor. The upstairs are heated the old fashioned way, radiant heat. Another example, which may be the same as other states are bedrooms. For a room to be legally considered a bedroom, it has to have a closet. What a friend of ours did in order to keep their property tax bill under control was to remove the closet door and put shelves in the closet. They use a closet just outside of the bedroom. It's legally an office/den with the new assessment.
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Old 02-23-2010, 08:52 AM
 
Location: Providence, RI
986 posts, read 2,027,794 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 68vette View Post
In Vermont it's very different than other parts of the country. There are many old farmhouses that still to this day only have heat on the main floor. The upstairs are heated the old fashioned way, radiant heat. Another example, which may be the same as other states are bedrooms. For a room to be legally considered a bedroom, it has to have a closet. What a friend of ours did in order to keep their property tax bill under control was to remove the closet door and put shelves in the closet. They use a closet just outside of the bedroom. It's legally an office/den with the new assessment.
The closet thing is pretty standard. That's an awesome way of lowering your taxes. If my house had better closet space, I'd consider doing that in the guest room.

Just make sure your friend turns it back into a closet if he wants to sell.
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Old 02-23-2010, 09:14 AM
 
Location: Winter Springs, FL
1,789 posts, read 4,059,141 times
Reputation: 925
Quote:
Originally Posted by RunawayJim View Post
The closet thing is pretty standard. That's an awesome way of lowering your taxes. If my house had better closet space, I'd consider doing that in the guest room.

Just make sure your friend turns it back into a closet if he wants to sell.
The home is for sale and was just assessed last year. The home is listed as a 3-4 bedroom home. The new owners could do what they want right now. The home won't be assessed again for another nine years, but with the way assessments are done here it won't be for another fifteen to twenty years. We are going close to eighteen years since our home was last assessed. I'm sure most towns are in no rush to do them right now with the decreased value of homes compared to a few years ago.
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