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Old 04-07-2019, 01:15 PM
 
27 posts, read 10,573 times
Reputation: 30

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I bought my house after the crash and thought I got a good deal. I lived in the city, but I wasn't crazy about all the noise and loud neighbors, so I found a short sale in Rockland County. I'm actually in a small town called Stony Point. It's beautiful, but I am bored out of my mind. It was quieter when I moved up here, which was nice, but now I have some loud neighbors with really loud motorcycles and their kids are always on my property. I worry that they're going to fall, and somehow I'd get sued. I've installed cameras as my insurance agent suggested just in case (Nest 150 bucks). I wasn't planning on staying here so long, but the house has not gone up in value at all in 10 freakin years, yet nearly all other places have shot up in value around me. I wish I moved to Fairfield County, Westchester County or Northern NJ. Stony Point has very little social life around here.

I kind of moved here for two reasons back in 2010. One, I got divorced and just wanted to get away from the city. I should had rented, but I didn't. I also liked the fact that it was a fixer-upper so I did a lot of the upgrades myself; where needed. Second, I suffer from a few medical conditions. Chronic Migraines, degenerative disc disease, and IBD. Socializing was difficult, but now, with new drugs, things are slowly getting better. I, at that time, didn't see the light and setup roots where it doesn't seem I can now leave. Taxes shot through the roof too. When I moved here, they were 7500 a year. They are now 22,500 a year. It's not a money issue, as I work from home and I can afford it. I just think I'm too far away from things and feeling a change of scenery would be good. I am just having a hard time justifying taking a loss on the house and not being about to find something similar.

Here's what I've done to the house:

1) Added a third garage, detached from the house. ($15k)
2) Finished the basement (50k)
3) Redid pool lining (7.5k)
4) Upgraded alarm system and made everything smart (5k)
5) Replaced boilers and AC units (15k)
6) Finished kitchen (5k)
7) Added neutral window treatments (3k)
8) Insulated home (2.5k)
9) Finished basement floors (3k)
=============================
Total: Approx 106000

Paid for the home: 695000

Realtor things I'd get around 750k before her commission and taxes. I really have no idea what to do. The realtor joked, it might be cheaper in the long run to buy or rent a small apt and just keep the house for like a getaway place or retreat.

I need some guidance. I have no one I can trust to advise me. I really feel up sh!ts creek here.
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Old 04-08-2019, 07:29 AM
 
Location: New York
831 posts, read 643,758 times
Reputation: 1536
Wow, I feel really bad. Stony point I always thought of as quaint. We used to have friends over there. I agree it's quiet. I am surprised that your taxes were so low to start with.(for the area) 22g's might sound like a lot because it is! But that's about right for the area, plus you added a garage.
Personally, the only advice I have is this and it's a hard pill to swallow too.
My grandfather was a very successful buisinessman. He once told me it wasn't all roses. He said this, "Sometimes you have to learn to eat your losses".

If this home has become such a burden, just let it go. It's a thing. It's a thing that is hurting your mind. Are you financially ruined if you sell it for 750? If not, let it go and move on. Life is too short to be "owned" by an object.
Best wishes
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Old 04-08-2019, 08:24 AM
 
Location: Hartsdale, NY
55 posts, read 47,282 times
Reputation: 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by grouse789 View Post
If this home has become such a burden, just let it go. It's a thing. It's a thing that is hurting your mind. Are you financially ruined if you sell it for 750? If not, let it go and move on. Life is too short to be "owned" by an object.
Best wishes
This really is the best advice. My grandfather always told me to never give my heart to something (or someone) that doesn't have one. Your wallet will recover and you'll feel better (hopefully) in the end about your decision.
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Old 04-08-2019, 09:39 AM
 
Location: Where my bills arrive
8,065 posts, read 9,496,710 times
Reputation: 7982
A lot of what you invested in can not be recouped in the sales price, items like insulation are considered standard not an upgrade. You need to decide if you want to move on and just do it or if you can afford to wait about 2 years homes prices may rise to a level that you feel will give you an adequate price.

The jump in taxes doesn't sound right, my guess is the previous owner had Advanced Star and Senior discount(s) I would contact the town and see why taxes are at the level you stated.

Good Luck

Last edited by VA Yankee; 04-08-2019 at 10:02 AM..
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Old 04-08-2019, 12:42 PM
 
448 posts, read 373,005 times
Reputation: 310
I’d probably sell.

You bought for 700, put in 100 and are getting 50 cents on the dollar for what you put in if it sells for 750. It’s not a horrendous situation. Just to be blunt. Unlike what you see on TV every dollar spent on improvements doesnt equate to a dollar or more in return. And the transactional costs are what they are regardless.

What is more concerning is that your area has been stagnant for 10 years off recessions lows. Even if your house was worth 800 I’d still sell. That’s not a good indication of things to come. Other markets look like their roaring compared to 2009 levels. Your appreciating at a snails pace with a big downside if the economy turns. Sell now if you can - and preferably move to an area with more growth potential that works for you. Maybe it’s a good time to downsize given the divorce? Maybe all of this leads to a better situation. Perhaps a luxury two bedroom apt in a denser area with better dating scene
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Old 04-08-2019, 12:54 PM
 
516 posts, read 414,956 times
Reputation: 668
I know this is not exactly what you want to hear, but you didn't do your homework back when you made the purchase. The most important aspect to a home's long term financial viability is the quality of the school district. Stony Point is not in a great school district. If they had their own school district it would be fine, but they don't. They are part of the very large North Rockland SD, and such is not highly regarded. As to taxes, right around the time you purchased, the Mirant company was in the processes of securing a big settlement/judgment (I don't remember which) as to over assessments and overpayment of taxes, which hit the school district hard. The huge uptick in taxes is partly a result of this.
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Old 04-08-2019, 04:48 PM
 
930 posts, read 277,403 times
Reputation: 2019
Welcome OP to my world. I brought my house months before the 2008 crisis. I may never get what I paid for it. OTOH, it was a great house for raising children.
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Old 04-08-2019, 06:42 PM
 
27 posts, read 10,573 times
Reputation: 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by grouse789 View Post
Wow, I feel really bad. Stony point I always thought of as quaint. We used to have friends over there. I agree it's quiet. I am surprised that your taxes were so low to start with.(for the area) 22g's might sound like a lot because it is! But that's about right for the area, plus you added a garage.
Personally, the only advice I have is this and it's a hard pill to swallow too.
My grandfather was a very successful buisinessman. He once told me it wasn't all roses. He said this, "Sometimes you have to learn to eat your losses".

If this home has become such a burden, just let it go. It's a thing. It's a thing that is hurting your mind. Are you financially ruined if you sell it for 750? If not, let it go and move on. Life is too short to be "owned" by an object.
Best wishes
Not a burden, just far away from everything. When I moved here, it was a nice refresh, but now since I'd like to socialize more, it's a hinderance. You have no idea how many people I've invited over any they didn't want to cross the Tappan Zee bridge. I sometimes feel like the only single dude my age around here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tales From Hartsdale View Post
This really is the best advice. My grandfather always told me to never give my heart to something (or someone) that doesn't have one. Your wallet will recover and you'll feel better (hopefully) in the end about your decision.
True, but it would be hard to get a similar house in size or at least acreage for what I'd come out with in northern NJ or Westchester. I really do not want to live in a condo or apt. I do like the privacy of the house. And the moving of everything is an absolute nightmare.

Quote:
Originally Posted by VA Yankee View Post
A lot of what you invested in can not be recouped in the sales price, items like insulation are considered standard not an upgrade. You need to decide if you want to move on and just do it or if you can afford to wait about 2 years homes prices may rise to a level that you feel will give you an adequate price.

The jump in taxes doesn't sound right, my guess is the previous owner had Advanced Star and Senior discount(s) I would contact the town and see why taxes are at the level you stated.

Good Luck
Garage had to be rebuilt as it was destroyed during a bad storm and trees fell on it. The trees around my property are prob. as old the the USA. The house was in neglect since it was a REO foreclosure. I had to fix the house up to be livable. It also had a pest issue. When I moved in, it was a nightmare. Now, it's a really nice house. Every realtor said if this was in Clarkstown or Nanuet, you'd get over a million.


Quote:
Originally Posted by JaRuss01 View Post
Iíd probably sell.

You bought for 700, put in 100 and are getting 50 cents on the dollar for what you put in if it sells for 750. Itís not a horrendous situation. Just to be blunt. Unlike what you see on TV every dollar spent on improvements doesnt equate to a dollar or more in return. And the transactional costs are what they are regardless.

What is more concerning is that your area has been stagnant for 10 years off recessions lows. Even if your house was worth 800 Iíd still sell. Thatís not a good indication of things to come. Other markets look like their roaring compared to 2009 levels. Your appreciating at a snails pace with a big downside if the economy turns. Sell now if you can - and preferably move to an area with more growth potential that works for you. Maybe itís a good time to downsize given the divorce? Maybe all of this leads to a better situation. Perhaps a luxury two bedroom apt in a denser area with better dating scene
It's been bothering me too. It's this tax issue that is suppressing all the properties in the area. NY State is supposed to take over 80% of the debt and that would ease the financial strain on the North Rockland School District.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 987ABC View Post
I know this is not exactly what you want to hear, but you didn't do your homework back when you made the purchase. The most important aspect to a home's long term financial viability is the quality of the school district. Stony Point is not in a great school district. If they had their own school district it would be fine, but they don't. They are part of the very large North Rockland SD, and such is not highly regarded. As to taxes, right around the time you purchased, the Mirant company was in the processes of securing a big settlement/judgment (I don't remember which) as to over assessments and overpayment of taxes, which hit the school district hard. The huge uptick in taxes is partly a result of this.
Yea, the Mirant is the issue. I was told when I bought the house by the inspector and others that it shouldn't be an issue. No one expected 120% + increase. As for North Rockland School District, the only part that is worse than the Stony Point / Theils / Garnerville schools (which are all A or higher) is the High School (which was C, but now rated apparently B+). I didn't think the schools would be that much of an issue as I do not have kids, but my parents did bring this up to me. It would be nice if Stony Point / Theils / Garnerville / Tomkins Cove broke away from North Rockland and had their own. Not sure if that would happen.

Quote:
Originally Posted by YorktownGal View Post
Welcome OP to my world. I brought my house months before the 2008 crisis. I may never get what I paid for it. OTOH, it was a great house for raising children.
I am surprised. Yorktown is a nice area. I would had thought it recovered by now. I actually paid less for the property than the original owner. 65k less. I wonder of the closing of Indian Point will effect all the surrounding towns with the lost tax base.
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Old 04-09-2019, 08:31 AM
 
72 posts, read 68,986 times
Reputation: 78
Sell at $750k. Not the end of the world.

It's important to note that you are not taking a $50k hit. You've been paying your mortgage for 9 years. The principal payments (debt paydown) are a form of savings.

A 20% down payment implies $139k of equity at close. You have put $106k into the home, so your total basis is $245k. I'm going to assume you took out a 30 year fixed mortgage. Average rates were about 4.5% in 2010. Mortgage balance of $556k at close. You would have amortized this down to roughly $436k over a 10 year period.

Sale price of $750k less the (completely absurd) broker fee of 6% gets you to $705k. Deduct the mortgage balance of $436k and you have $268k of equity proceeds. You haven't lost money.

You can also look at this on a better/worse off basis. At its core, your primary residence is necessity, not an investment. You have paid a total of $240k in interest. Assume annual maintenance of 1% of value over 10 years, which equals $75k. So your total "fees" are $315k. However, if you didn't buy, you'd have to rent somewhere. I would estimate about $3.5k in monthly rent, or $378k total. This more than offsets your interest and maintenance. I'm not accounting for property taxes in this calc because I don't know your income situation. But if you had stayed in one of the 5 boroughs, you'd be paying city tax.

Even under conservative assumptions, you are at worst breakeven. Not great given the overall market, but nothing to be depressed over. My only piece of advice to you would be to make sure to move somewhere with a good school district.
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Old 04-09-2019, 09:19 AM
 
516 posts, read 414,956 times
Reputation: 668
Quote:
Originally Posted by Craigsquestions View Post
Not a burden, just far away from everything. When I moved here, it was a nice refresh, but now since I'd like to socialize more, it's a hinderance. You have no idea how many people I've invited over any they didn't want to cross the Tappan Zee bridge. I sometimes feel like the only single dude my age around here.



True, but it would be hard to get a similar house in size or at least acreage for what I'd come out with in northern NJ or Westchester. I really do not want to live in a condo or apt. I do like the privacy of the house. And the moving of everything is an absolute nightmare.



Garage had to be rebuilt as it was destroyed during a bad storm and trees fell on it. The trees around my property are prob. as old the the USA. The house was in neglect since it was a REO foreclosure. I had to fix the house up to be livable. It also had a pest issue. When I moved in, it was a nightmare. Now, it's a really nice house. Every realtor said if this was in Clarkstown or Nanuet, you'd get over a million.




It's been bothering me too. It's this tax issue that is suppressing all the properties in the area. NY State is supposed to take over 80% of the debt and that would ease the financial strain on the North Rockland School District.



Yea, the Mirant is the issue. I was told when I bought the house by the inspector and others that it shouldn't be an issue. No one expected 120% + increase. As for North Rockland School District, the only part that is worse than the Stony Point / Theils / Garnerville schools (which are all A or higher) is the High School (which was C, but now rated apparently B+). I didn't think the schools would be that much of an issue as I do not have kids, but my parents did bring this up to me. It would be nice if Stony Point / Theils / Garnerville / Tomkins Cove broke away from North Rockland and had their own. Not sure if that would happen.



I am surprised. Yorktown is a nice area. I would had thought it recovered by now. I actually paid less for the property than the original owner. 65k less. I wonder of the closing of Indian Point will effect all the surrounding towns with the lost tax base.
Its a mistake to ignore school districts simply because you have no kids. Whether you have kids or not, the school district is probably the largest driver of property values for a suburban home in NY.
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