Bluesapalooza Rain Ushers In A Perfect Week of Summer Weather!
Market Summary – July 31 to August 14
Single-Family Home Inventory
Market Updates and News
Favorite New Listing for the Period
This isn’t a brand new listing but it might as well be. This property has been booked so much that it hasn’t been available for agents to show. This is Aspen Creek Condos at the south side of Eagle Base, so excellent access to the slopes. This is a top floor 1 bedroom / 1.25 bath condo with vaulted ceilings. This is a popular STR property and is sold in “turn-key” condition. Super clean and comfortable. Upgrades include recently remodeled kitchen, vinyl plank flooring and modern pellet burning furnace in the fireplace. Fantastic utility at this price. Easy access to elevator and under structure parking. Sellers are being relocated out-of-state. Check out the video tour.
Other Real Estate News
Most Mono County property owners should have received some sort of notice from the County Assessorduring the period. The Assessor’s office closes “the roll” (tax roll) on June 30 of each year. It is major deadline for them to meet, and busy real estate years like 2021 make the task even more daunting. There were lots of new property transfers to review and assess and new thresholds to consider.
And even though none of us like our taxes going up, it is a great challenge for the Office to do it accurately and fairly. And if not, that is what the appeals process is for.
The aggregate assessed value of all property in Mono County hit a new all-time high at $7.7 billion. Not surprising. This included many properties that “jumped” significantly in assessed value because they had been previously lowered under the “Prop.8” regulations. Many of these properties were purchased in the 2005-07 timeframe and in recent years had lower assessed values than their original sales prices and original assessed values. With the recent and rapid price appreciation these property assessments can be aggressively pushed upward on a factor of 2% per year beyond their original assessed values. These large jumps in assessed values have some owners questioning the increases in value. I know, I’ve taken their calls.
The Unsecured Property tax (or more commonly referred to as personal property tax) bills were also received during the period. These can include the improvements to leased and owned properties that generate revenue, including STR condos producing revenue and bed tax. I received a handful of these tax bills and for some reason they are far more annoying than real property tax bills. But it is the Assessor’s obligation to the State Board of Equalization to account for these taxes.
And if the tax payer doesn’t agree with these assessed values they can always appeal. I find the appeals process is not commonly known to many property owners in California. In large counties like Los Angeles it may seem futile, impersonal and cumbersome. Or worse. In Mono County it is rather straightforward — the Assessor’s office is small and reasonably available (and hopefully responsive). But be sure to listen to all of the reasoning for the new assessed value. Sometimes it is more than just comparable sales data. There are all sorts of rules. The entire California property tax law consumes about eight inches (thick) of legal books.
But here’s the big tip-off; if you think you have a legitimate appeal, call the Assessor’s office and discuss it. Be prepared with facts and data (always). Call the Realtor® who helped you purchase the property for applicable sales data. The Office seriously tries to avoid formal appeals because they can become expensive to the County and consume valuable staff time. If it is a small appeal amount the County can easily go financially negative. They have to be sensible.
If there is no satisfaction with an initial discussion then go ahead and file an appeal. It is inexpensive and is now formalized. Now they have to deal with it. Very few appeals ever make it to a hearing. Usually there is some agreement struck (also known as a stipulation) that ultimately has to be approved by the Appeals Board.
If an appealing taxpayer is confused about who has the burden of proof, ask the Office. In almost all cases where the property is not owner-occupied, it is the burden of the taxpayer. But every appealing taxpayer should consider the burden to be theirs regardless.
And forget trying to buffalo the Office (it happens), they know the properties and they know the sales. They sit right next door to the County Recorder’s office, and they have a comprehensive feed from the Mammoth MLS.
The good news is that the County is spending some of their new tax receipts. This summer there has been all sorts of new and quality road paving in the south county. The streets in the community of Crowley Lake and others have never looked so good.