April 16, 2024
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April 16, 2024
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Tax Rate Pending, Equalization Gone And Final Property Taxes TBD

As the world is making less sense than ever, in our Bergen County towns we are witnessing and enduring the terror, protests and false accusations our children are subjected to in public schools, colleges, communities and beyond. We are proud to say we have galvanized together as a people to show strength, determination and courage.

Globally, the protestors have shown continual hatred toward Israel at moments that should be joyful such as the Thanksgiving Day Parade and the tree lighting ceremony in New York City, stopping traffic on roads, bridges and other public places.At the recent Israel Open Homes Fair at Keter Torah Synagogue, red paint bombs were audaciously thrown at cars and protestors, insisting that we have no right to hold an event within our own private domain. The police, security and preparation to deter any potential violence was all-encompassing. The streets from River Road to New Bridge Road were barricaded with fencing and security all around, demanding a hefty drain on our town’s budget and resources.

The perpetrators of the most horrific attack on October 7, 2023 in Gaza showed crocodile tears of victimhood while the real victims were branded the “colonizers.” In the midst of this harrowing situation, we have to continue to live life, with the determination of Am Yisrael Chai.

To switch gears back to mundane life, let’s turn to the subject of the current Teaneck Township revaluation program. By now everyone is aware that Teaneck has been approved by the State of New Jersey Department of Treasury Division of Taxation to conduct the formal certification and revaluation inspection process for this year. This means that each resident has had the value of their home reassessed after a decade, to reflect estimated current market value as of October 1, 2023. Home values have certainly increased and so the fear of higher taxes looms. However, once all the information is gathered by the summer (2024), we will be informed of the new established tax rate, determined by the aggregate value of all the assessments in Teaneck. This value has now changed as a result of the revaluation reporting and will result in the true adjustment of the rate.

Looking back to 2023, property tax amounts in Teaneck were based at a rate of 3.256 with an equalization of 82.34. Bergenfield’s multiplier was at the 3.322 rate at an equalization of 83.97. New Milford had a rate of 3.648 with an equalization of 80.08. Over the years, the rates have fluctuated, with the rates for Bergenfield and New Milford being much lower in comparison to Teaneck; however, the rates for those towns have recently escalated to even higher than Teaneck in 2023.

The new established rate, which is the multiple of the new assessed value, will allow for some homes to maintain their current tax amount, though some will vary. The town’s budget has to maintain a zero balance and the new rate will be calculated based on budgetary costs. Please note that the equalization of the assessed value, which in the past was 82.34%, will no longer be implemented. There will be zero equalization of the assessed value, so the final amount of taxes will be based on the multiplier of the new rate times the full assessed value reported. Residents should have already received the letter from the appraisal company indicating the assessed value of the property only. The actual property taxes for the 2024 tax year cannot be computed until the county, school and municipal budgets are approved, allowing for the new 2024 tax rate to be established in the summer of 2024.

The revaluation within the town has already been finalized for the property to be appraised at full market value. When the appraiser came unannounced and no one was home for entry, they did leave a card specifying a return date and a phone number to reschedule the inspection according to the home owner’s convenience for entry. The owner is not required to allow the appraiser into the interior of the home, yet they had the right to visit all properties, measuring and photographing the exterior of the building with the interior inspection only if full permission from the owner was granted.

As a realtor and homeowner in Teaneck, it is understandable that we are all concerned about the new property tax amount. Now that the equalization will be zero, reflecting the full fair market value, the new rate will be determined based on the results from the revaluation. Only when the full results are determined will the tax rate be adjusted accordingly. The tax department cautions not to use the current rate multiplied by the new assessed value since it will only cause confusion and needless worry. The aggregate value of the assessments in Teaneck has changed for use in 2024.

We remember when the last evaluation took place. Some homeowners received an increase in their final tax amount and others had their property taxes reduced or remain the same. Remember, it’s the multiple of the rate times the assessed value and it cannot be calculated at this time since the rate is only pending till summer when the final computation is in and the county, school and municipal budgets are approved. We will know by the summer of 2024, so save yourself from unneeded stress at this time.

However, if a property owner wishes to dispute the 2024 assessed value, they have every right to file an appeal by May 1, 2024 as they can contest the amount yearly as well at with the Bergen County Board of taxation or by visiting the website of  https://www/co/bergen.nj.us/bergen-county-board-of-taxation/about-board-of-taxation.

Before you run to sell your home or have a panic attack since values have risen substantially, consider this a “wait and see” what rate will be determined for the final computation. Don’t be in haste to move to the next town either. Each township is on a varying schedule of revaluation. The town of Bergenfield is getting ready to start their reassessment next.

Moving on to real estate values trends, the monthly snapshot reported in the NJMLS indicates a one-year change in closed sales of all properties down by 3.6%, a one-year change of 33.9% in homes for sale for all properties validating the continuation of less inventory and a one-year increase +14% change in median sales prices.

The numbers support that the median existing home prices continue to rise. However, for the future projects that listing activity has started to pick up, mortgage rates are stabilizing with housing completions on the rise, and the good news is that inventory is expected to improve in the coming months.

If you do need help with sold comps in the area, please feel free to call on me to assist with sold information since housing data is at my fingertips.

Let’s put your concerns aside for now. The month of Adar is a happy one—b’simcha!

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