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Thursday, November 15, 2007

Property Taxes

It's that time of year where the annual property taxes are due. Oh joy! I look forward to this month all year long NOT! We do not escrow taxes or insurances through our mortgage. I highly recommend that everyone seriously consider this. Being in the business that I'm in, I constantly see where people have a negative balance for escrow for various reasons, primarly, forced place insurance. Whoa! It can cost quite a bundle and is a major hassle to get cleared up, especially when you are selling and time crunched for an accurate payoff. So the taxes are due and payable with a 4% discount by November 30th. That means that if I want my 4% discount, I've got to cough up a whole $5,200 and change. I thought HEY! I'll pay by AE card so I can at least get the points & then pay the AE card in December (I have the cash, just barely and would really like to see it earn a little more interest). But in order to do that, they will charge me $170 and change as a 'convenience fee'. Hmmm. That kinda defeats the whole 4% discount, doesn't it?? I guess I'll just sit here on the 30th, in front of the computer, and at 4:45pm, will go to the BCPA.net website and pay my taxes online at the last possible minute. :( It needs to be done. We are luckier than most though. We've lived in our beautiful intracoasatal front home since the mid 80's ... so our tax value is very very low. The assessed value is very very high, however, with the wonderful "Save Our Homes" bill, they can only increase my tax value by 3% a year. :) Woohoo. My neighbors, who bought there house a few years after us but did not homestead it immediately (had a home in chicago that they thought would serve better with a homestead) pay around $20,000 in property taxes. Yup, that's 20 grand. I don't know how they do it! I don't know how alot of people do it. That would be why the big issue with the state is Property Tax. My big issue would be Property Insurance, as there is nothing to keep the cost down there. We pay flood, hazard AND wind. The wind runs around $4000 a year. Hazard is $1500 and flood is $700. At least by paying all this ourselves, we can keep an eye on the real picture of what it cost, what we are paying for, etc. Can really get away from you if you don't pay attention!! Ok, that's all for now. Time for me to log off & go home.

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