April 8, 2024
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The Assessments Went Up and the Multiplier Went Down

girl with chalk in her hand solves a mathematical problem on the blackboard.

Many of us in Teaneck lit our Shabbat candles last Friday night having just received by mail the new real estate tax assessments for our homes. If one understood what they were looking at, there should not have been too many surprises. With few exceptions, the over 10,000 residential properties that were assessed all went up in value. This, of course, makes sense, as the last time the town was evaluated was over 10 years ago and real estate values across the board have gone up.

I had a chance to speak with Teaneck’s tax assessor, James Tighe, on Tuesday and his first words to me were, “Please make sure everyone you speak with understands that while the values have gone up, the multiplier has gone down! There has been an approximately 60% increase in the value of most of the homes in Teaneck and, at the same time, there is an approximately 60% decrease in the multiplier that the town will use.”

This reality should leave most homeowners in Teaneck with a tax liability similar to what they had in 2023. As an example, if someone’s home was assessed at $500,000 in 2023 they were responsible for $3.46 for every $1,000 and their yearly taxes would be $17,300. Now, with the new evaluation, this home would likely have seen a 62% increase in value, thus making the home worth $810,000. With the new multiplier at 2.04 the taxes would be $16,524.

There would seem to be one group of “winners” with regards to the new valuations. Those who built a new home in the last year or two were most likely assessed at a much more realistic number back then. These homes, therefore, are much closer to the true market value of homes today. Thus, new construction would not have experienced the same 60% increase in assessed value as the rest of the township. What these homeowners did experience, along with everyone else, is the drop in the multiplier. This group of new homeowners should, theoretically, experience a drop of many thousands of dollars in their tax liabilities.

I find it humorous to be writing an article dealing with valuations and multipliers. Yes, I was a good student throughout college and graduate school, but there was one subject I always struggled with and that was math. I memorized Pythagoras’ Theorem and the trigonometric ratios and I know what sin, cos and tan equal. Today, of course, I know there are 43,560 ft in an acre (check out our ad) and, yes, I can figure out what a 5% commission comes to. However, at the closings, I do leave the settlement paperwork to the attorneys!


Nechama Polak is the broker of record and owner of V&N Group LLC, located at 1401 Palisade Avenue in Teaneck. Send your thoughts and comments to [email protected] or call 201 826 8809

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