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Posted: 9/12/2010 7:32:00 AM EDT
I'm looking a buying a 12 acre peice of property. Its zoned correctly so I could put up a building for my business and a house on the property. The property is in the area where I do a large percentage of my work so its a ideal location.

Only proablem is this town has high property tax. I'm trying to weigh the pros and cons of having a shorter commute to work and spending more time with my family vs. paying a high propety tax.


Basically I will most likely be forced to build a smaller house then I would like. I know taxes are based on assessed value. What do towns really look at to come up with that assessed value? Is it just sq ft? # of bedrooms? Do they look at type of material in the house?

In new jersey we pay outragous property tax so I am trying to see if I design a house a certain way if I can get a lower assessment?

Link Posted: 9/12/2010 7:45:11 AM EDT
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 7:57:09 AM EDT
The answer is going to be specific to your location, but overall, they look at present "value" ie, resale value. (roughly)

My 1.8 acre lot, with a well, (in CO) is assessed at $100,000, and the structure assessed at $200,000. So, I am assessed for $300,000 and pay $2200 in taxes.

In NJ, I would be paying $8000-$10,000.


It might be worth it for you to live in a manufactured home or trailer home that is NOT on a permanent foundation. Pay tax as a vehicle, not at a primary residence.

Link Posted: 9/12/2010 7:58:19 AM EDT
Build it to look like this

Link Posted: 9/12/2010 7:58:45 AM EDT
Build it underground.
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 8:04:29 AM EDT
What are the farm tax breaks in NJ like?
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 8:04:55 AM EDT
I'm rather sure that the taxes are based upon assessed value. Mine are. If the land itself is now unimproved, you expect the assessment for it to double once you put structures on it and it is deemed improved. Add to that the assessments on the structures themselves and you could be in for a major surprise. As far as materials used in the structure goes, when I was reassessed, they measured square footage, counted bathrooms, kitchens, and other rooms then totaled it up. I don't think the materials used played a role at all.
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 8:08:33 AM EDT
Don't know about NJ, but here we get assessed on acreage the house sits on, the square footage of the house, amount of rooms.

If you have more buildings on the property, they will jack you up on that also. My stepson lives and works in NJ. You guys get taxed for breathing.
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 8:09:21 AM EDT
Originally Posted By maddmatt:
What are the farm tax breaks in NJ like?


This land I am looking at is farm assessed. So right now the taxes for the 12 acres is 85 bucks a year. Once i put a house on it I will have to pay regular tax on 1 acre which will be around 3500 a year.
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 8:10:16 AM EDT
Tiny ass house, with a hidden underground bunker living area underneath.
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 8:12:19 AM EDT
I would build one out of shipping containers on a cement pad. That way the hope is movable and thus taxed way less.
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 8:12:43 AM EDT
Higher wall, longer ladder.

They'll just change the rules.

You'll still be fucked.
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 8:14:29 AM EDT
Originally Posted By RuskEnt:
Originally Posted By maddmatt:
What are the farm tax breaks in NJ like?


This land I am looking at is farm assessed. So right now the taxes for the 12 acres is 85 bucks a year. Once i put a house on it I will have to pay regular tax on 1 acre which will be around 3500 a year.


I am always glad I Live in rural VA when I hear that

.43% tax rate here
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 8:15:48 AM EDT
It's no help to you, but I have 5 acres w/1200 ft^2 (on one story) house and two stall garage. My property tax is exactly $402/yr. Taxes are ridulously cheap here. My assessed value is maybe 1/2 the actual market value and probably closer to 1/3.

Link Posted: 9/12/2010 8:20:20 AM EDT
Originally Posted By Orion_Shall_Rise:
Originally Posted By RuskEnt:
Originally Posted By maddmatt:
What are the farm tax breaks in NJ like?


This land I am looking at is farm assessed. So right now the taxes for the 12 acres is 85 bucks a year. Once i put a house on it I will have to pay regular tax on 1 acre which will be around 3500 a year.


I am always glad I Live in rural VA when I hear that

.43% tax rate here


this town is 3.2%

Makes me want to live in this shitty apartment in a the sticks forever.
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 8:21:24 AM EDT
If possible, I'd look into AG exception if it is allowed there.

Planting an apple orchard (or something along that line), or raising goats, etc.

Here in TX it makes a HUGE difference.



Good luck.
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 8:24:44 AM EDT
Depends on the specifics of your tax code but they typically count living space. So, if you want to finish your basement, do it after you get your CO.
Leave some construction material piled up over your drain openings for the basement bathroom during the inspection.
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 8:25:29 AM EDT
Since taxes are assessed on value, I would think you would be taxed according to size and quality. The only suggestion I have would be to build a smaller home with a finished basement. In some areas, basements are considered to be less valuable than above grade living space. If done correctly, basements are just as functional.

Another option would be to build a home with an unfinished basement and/or unfinished attic space and roughed in electrical and plumbing. Once the home is completed and occupied, finish the space out yourself without telling the tax accessors. They can't tax you on space they don't know you have.
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 8:33:06 AM EDT
Dig a pond, build the house on floats....then its a boat = no taxes.
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 8:37:29 AM EDT
Originally Posted By RuskEnt:
Originally Posted By maddmatt:
What are the farm tax breaks in NJ like?


This land I am looking at is farm assessed. So right now the taxes for the 12 acres is 85 bucks a year. Once i put a house on it I will have to pay regular tax on 1 acre which will be around 3500 a year.


You may be able to split it into 2 properties, like 1/8th an acre where the house sets and leave the rest of it farm assessed.
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 8:41:33 AM EDT
build large pole bldg, cut out some space for an apartment in said bldg, on the sly
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 8:41:46 AM EDT
build a prefab house , the initial assessment in a lot of places is based on cost . build a plainer appearing house with a plan for improvements later
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 8:43:11 AM EDT
In MD the 'basement' is not assessed as part of the square footage of the house. The front of my house has a swell of dirt pushed up to it, and you enter on a landing halfway between the upper and lower levels, but the other three sides are at ground level. Since the front door's not at ground level, my "basement" isn't taxed even though its finished, livable area.

Kharn
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 8:52:14 AM EDT
built it underground, with a small surface dwelling and don't claim all the subsurface area
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 9:00:27 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/12/2010 9:00:52 AM EDT by raven]
The houses in Amsterdam used to be taxed by the width of the lot, that's why the houses are so skinny and tall. If you go inside the stairs are damn near vertical
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 9:06:12 AM EDT
Originally Posted By RuskEnt:
Originally Posted By maddmatt:
What are the farm tax breaks in NJ like?


This land I am looking at is farm assessed. So right now the taxes for the 12 acres is 85 bucks a year. Once i put a house on it I will have to pay regular tax on 1 acre which will be around 3500 a year.


So get it subdivided and split off .5 or .25 acre and see if you can keep the bill down.
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 2:39:19 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/12/2010 2:41:16 PM EDT by AcidGambit]
We get assessed on costs when you purchase the land/house or build it. If you have a friend who's a contractor, you can really fudge your assessed value. Though it depends on how your value is based, many are on the properties around you.

Quite a few people I know have purchased shitty homes, permitted the exterior improvements, then had the inside done on the sly. Property Taxes are fucking bullshit.
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 2:47:17 PM EDT
How about a cave-type dwelling?
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 3:00:56 PM EDT
Ordinarily, unfinished basements and garages are not taxed (or are taxed at a cheaper rate).

You need to talk with your local tax assessor or look it up online.

Do you have an architect yet? They should be able to tell you also.
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 3:41:41 PM EDT
Large unfinished basement that you convert to finished , or annexation of a garage.
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 3:49:49 PM EDT
underground house! with a shanty shack above ground.
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 3:51:57 PM EDT


1. Fuck sanding
2. I like to listen to birds when I shit.
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 3:57:43 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/12/2010 3:58:04 PM EDT by gregert12]
Is it just sq ft? # of bedrooms? Do they look at type of material in the house?



Square feet of livable space. For example, you have an upstairs attic/bonus room that you are making a bedroom. When standing against the wall, where your shoulder/ear hit the wall, straight down is the end of your livable space. The rest of the finished room is just extra
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 4:06:40 PM EDT
Originally Posted By gregert12:
Is it just sq ft? # of bedrooms? Do they look at type of material in the house?



Square feet of livable space. For example, you have an upstairs attic/bonus room that you are making a bedroom. When standing against the wall, where your shoulder/ear hit the wall, straight down is the end of your livable space. The rest of the finished room is just extra


If that is the case you may be able to make an A frame that has low livable space, but good space.
like this:
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 4:38:49 PM EDT
It's Jersey. Can't you just pay off the assessor?
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 4:50:07 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/12/2010 4:52:47 PM EDT by BigHunt]
Originally Posted By Orion_Shall_Rise:
Originally Posted By RuskEnt:
Originally Posted By maddmatt:
What are the farm tax breaks in NJ like?


This land I am looking at is farm assessed. So right now the taxes for the 12 acres is 85 bucks a year. Once i put a house on it I will have to pay regular tax on 1 acre which will be around 3500 a year.


I am always glad I Live in rural VA when I hear that

.43% tax rate here


.0275 here. State minimum. Our school district voters determine the levy. We live in an "economically challenged" area and our school applies for and gets federal grants to offset the super low property tax rates.

Taxes on a 160 acre pice of farmland around here is about $90
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 4:59:58 PM EDT
Portable buildings can help. Lark makes some nice portable garages and sheds. That way, you don't have an attached garage and the roof area is reduced (often used for assessed value).

The basement thing can also help. But, I've never seen a basement that did not "feel" like a basement, finished or not.

Trusses can be designed so "attic" rooms can be installed. However, left completely unfinished, without floors or stairs. Same goes for bedrooms and extra bathrooms.

There was a really "cool" house locally that my wife and I always wanted to purchase. When it was finally up for sale, we learned it was a 2 bedroom, one bath house. (it was quite large). That way, taxable value is reduced.
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 5:07:27 PM EDT
As another poster mentioned the exact formula varies from state to state and probably even between counties.

Around here, at least, it is some function of sales and footage. As I understand it, the assessor will take a sample of houses in your area, look at the size and selling price, and then calculate the assessed value which is used as the tax basis. The assessed value of your home along with the square footage is almost never what it actually is (though, around here, they have been getting closer).

Look for tax breaks in your state/community. Also look for methods they use to increase taxes.
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 5:16:11 PM EDT
Originally Posted By PBIR:


1. Fuck sanding
2. I like to listen to birds when I shit.



Well there is one spot that will need sanding.
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 5:16:35 PM EDT
Some of you guys have wacked ideas. I just want to keep my taxes under 15k a year. I dont want to live in a fucking storage container on a concrete slab!
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 5:30:06 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/12/2010 5:30:39 PM EDT by Bushmaster225]
Its not going to be 3500, I started off there a couple of years ago now I'm over 8300. and its not an acre, school suck etc. Its Jersey you will be paying 15,000 soon.
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 5:34:46 PM EDT

Originally Posted By RuskEnt:
Some of you guys have wacked ideas. I just want to keep my taxes under 15k a year. I dont want to live in a fucking storage container on a concrete slab!

Looks terrible!



Link Posted: 9/12/2010 5:37:35 PM EDT
Originally Posted By captainpooby:
It's Jersey. Can't you just pay off the assessor?


Link Posted: 9/12/2010 5:42:44 PM EDT
Originally Posted By RuskEnt:
I just want to keep my taxes under 15k a year.


My total mortgage payment, taxes, and insurance per year ain't that much.
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 5:44:53 PM EDT
I know here in certain areas, a floor whose ceiling is less than 6' high does not count as a floor. I guy I know who is 5'6" or so made his basement 5'10".

Link Posted: 9/12/2010 5:48:21 PM EDT
Put up one of those cool Mess Tents, FK NJ taxes...
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 5:53:54 PM EDT
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 5:54:00 PM EDT
Originally Posted By BillofRights:
The answer is going to be specific to your location, but overall, they look at present "value" ie, resale value. (roughly)

My 1.8 acre lot, with a well, (in CO) is assessed at $100,000, and the structure assessed at $200,000. So, I am assessed for $300,000 and pay $2200 in taxes.

In NJ, I would be paying $8000-$10,000.


It might be worth it for you to live in a manufactured home or trailer home that is NOT on a permanent foundation. Pay tax as a vehicle, not at a primary residence.




That may cvary by town. In my town; the same tax rate applies to both vehicles and homes.
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 5:55:50 PM EDT
Build the house you want.
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 7:30:18 PM EDT
mobile home with the wheels left on, attached to a furnished "garage"
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 7:39:10 PM EDT
Originally Posted By RuskEnt:
Some of you guys have wacked ideas. I just want to keep my taxes under 15k a year. I dont want to live in a fucking storage container on a concrete slab!


Tis Arfcom, after all.
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