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How Townhouse Property Taxes Can Get Out of Control in NYC

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  • How Townhouse Property Taxes Can Get Out of Control in NYC

    Does the real estate community think that property taxes for townhouses, brownstones and townhomes in general in NYC are much higher than comparable condo or co-op apartments?

    Because last night a friend told me during a poker game that he's paying $80,000 a year on his UES townhouse. It's a 17' wide by 100' deep townhouse, probably 3,000 sq ft or so in size. He's been trying to dispute his assessed value with the city, and it's been hell because no tax certiorari firm will work with him. They all tell him there's no shot in getting the city to reassess his townhome, despite him being to provide multiple comparable sales in his neighborhood of other townhouses that have traded for less.

    Apparently some famous person owned the townhouse in the 1960's or 1970's and didn't bother about the cost basis / assessed value and never disputed it. As a result, when they got it, it already had a quite high assessed value. To my understanding, it sounds like the city might agree to lower an assessment increase, but never the cost basis or original assessment?

    Seems like the city basically told him that if he doesn't like it, he can just sell the property. To me, this is insane, and another serious issue with buying a standalone property in the city.

    Buying a townhouse in NYC may sound great to have no neighbors and own your own building, but then you're on your own if the city tries to screw you on property taxes. Good luck fighting that!
    Last edited by showtime; 03-07-2019, 02:50 AM.