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Expected Rise in New Jersey Foreclosed Homes Due to Tax Hikes

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By : John Cutts    99 or more times read
In the current economic downturn and with unemployment rate going to the roofs, the news of tax hikes is something that homeowners would not want to hear. But waterfront homeowners in Toms River, New Jersey did not just hear the news but also experience it as their property taxes rose twice their usual rates.

Residents in Toms River gave mixed reactions over the decision of local officials to use the final extension from New Jersey to hold off a revaluation. The Certified Valuations Inc. was hired by town officials to perform the revaluation.

Industry experts are concerned that the increase in property hikes would be the catalyst that would result in more homeowners defaulting and the area being swamped with foreclosed homes.

Sunset Manor Association Chairman Rich Savacool said that homeowners who are disgruntled about their revaluations have filed tax appeals with the Ocean County's Board of Taxation.

According to tax records, about 6,500 beach houses in Tom River's accounted for 15 percent of the town's total revenue before the revaluation. Industry experts said that with the current tax hikes, homeowners are expected to pay 28 percent of the town's total revenue. Some homeowners who filed tax appeals said that if they lose, they will sell their properties.

Lawrence Ozzie Vituscka, tax administrator in Ocean County, said that as of May 1 deadline, there were about 3,844 tax appeal cases. He added that the county has a total of 14,000 tax appeals from reassessed or revaluated towns, including Jackson, Manchester, Barnegat and Lacey.

Meanwhile, the revaluation led to the launch of the Citizenís Committee for Tax Relief. The group wants to educate residents about how to fight increase property values, filing tax appeals or how to freeze taxes on their properties. Members of the group believed that the values of properties are inflated.

On the other hand, industry experts said that the tax hike would affect home sales in the area, noting that the first thing any prospective buyer asks from a seller is the amount of taxes. They said that the county government should put a moratorium on evaluation and based it on the current market not on values four or five years ago.

Additionally, they expect more commercial foreclosures as landlords would pass on tax increases to tenants who will be forced to move out and leave the buildings vacant.
John Cutts has been educated in the finer points of the foreclosure market over 5 years.

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