Ah, June at last. What’s not to love? The kids are out of school. It’s warm, finally. The days are long and getting longer. The hay is getting cut now that the rain has let up some. June can also be a month when people get busy with stuff and real estate purchases take a back seat. We’ll see what happens this year but it’s not uncommon for there to be a drop in sales to start the second half of the year – because fewer contracts were written in June. For now though things are clicking right along. Sale of homes, vacant lots, hobby farms, and ranches have all done well so far this year. Foreclosures are at a new low with very few bank owned properties on the market. Interest rates are holding steady but some say we should expect them to creep up later in the year on expected action by the Federal Reserve.
One thing that really got the phone ringing last month were the “Real Property Notice of Valuation” forms that the county assessor mailed out. It seems like regardless of whether the assessed value went up or down it raised a lot of questions for homeowners. People who bought in the years before “the crash” have likely seen their assessed value drop and, while the tax bite is less, wonder when the bleeding will stop. Luckily the answer is, it has. The county assessor used data from the second-half of 2013 and all of 2014 to establish these new assessed values and while the market was certainly improving back then, prices had not really started to rise. If you’re curious what comparable sales they used to figure the value of your home you can see for yourself at DeltaCounty.com on the Assessors page. They have the sales data grouped by town and from lowest to highest. Commercial properties and land sales are available too. Even if you don’t have any disagreement with your tax bill it’s pretty interesting to scroll through and see what all changed hands and for how much. After all, it’s not being snoopy if it’s “public information,” right?
(This article was also published in the Merchant Herald.)