Tuesday, August 25, 2009

If I Was Beside Myself, It Would Help

There is, though, only the one of me. My head is still caught in vice jaws labelled "home lender" and "State property taxes" and it looks to be a close squeeze. I cannot do much about but get through it or fail in the effort, so why not whine to you?

...Times are tough all over, is why. I'm trying to find out the current status of my application for the several exemptions that would reduce my tax burden and (therefore) bring down my escrow amounts but it is slow going. (Several readers have suggested I spin the taxes out of loan but I can't -- as a first-time home-buyer of modest means, the choice was not and is not available).

So if I seem a bit distracted, if there's a lot more "linky" than "thinky" some mornings, now you know why. The next couple of months will tell the tale. I'm moderately hopeful but I'm having to cut outlay to the bone. Oh, waaaaaah, I've got a roof over my head now and looks like I'll keep it, I should maybe not fret so much. Easier said than done!

14 comments:

Chris said...

Good Morning Roberta - I strongly recommend approaching your local communities tax department and talking to them about the situation. I'd be suprised if they weren't willing to work out something, in some way, to help you out. It may mean some monies are paid out over time with some interest but that's a lot better situation than scrambling to come up with a load of money all at one time - Good Luck

perlhaqr said...

I'm sympathetic. We're trying to re-fi right now, but housing prices have dropped and I'm not sure if we're upside down or not... if we are, no one is going to lend us more than the house is worth, so we'll get to keep paying a higher interest rate on a house that isn't worth as much as we owe on it.

The appraiser comes today.

I hope you do ok.

Lorimor said...

I'm no financial guy so all I can do is wish you good luck. Keep at it!

og said...

Hard times indeed.

If you worked on hourly, you could get more cash based on the overtime you work; if you couldn't get overtime at least you could get a side gig- delivering -papers if need be, every dollar helps. being salary (and I may be making an erroneous assumption by assuming you are)means neither option is available. That's where I'm stuck myself. Best of luck, and hope for a lotto win.

James E. Griffin said...

If you have a local university near - Okay, a relative term in the great flatland - with a law school, I'd give them a call, see what they have to say about where to get pro bono advice for struggling homeowners.

Dittos on the suggestion of the local community tax department.

Then there's having a chat with your local city councilman, county commissioner, their staffs, and even your member of the House of Representatives and/or your US Senator's office. The local hippies use these resources, you might get some of your tax dollars' worth out of them.

BobG said...

Hope things work out ok; I paid off my house several years ago, and I'm very glad I did.

Did it MY way said...

Taxes should be questioned due to the drop in values. The assment is for a certain percentage of market value. The market value is in the sink, so taxes for this year should be lower than last year. You are allowed to complain about the assement. I did last year, and they lowered the assement. Good luck!

Jeffro said...

"Whine" all you want. We've got broad shoulders.

Sam said...

Keep your chin up, beautiful. We are all pulling for you. You'll get through this.

Nathan said...

Did It My Way, the problem with thinking property taxes should be lower this year because home values dropped is that property taxes are paid in arrears.

So you are paying this year based on the value of your property last year.

Bobbi, I hope you can get some relief, but the Demoncrapic Marion County Assessor is not known to be a merciful person...nor are the people in his office.

Davidwhitewolf said...

If your property tax assessor's office is not helpful, you could try the other direction and approach the lender for a mod. Loansafe.org's forums are extremely useful in this regard.

Davidwhitewolf said...

Also, if the problem is not that you can't afford the taxes, but rather that you can't afford them right now (but will be able to make them up over say 4-6 months), you could look at the local assessor's actual practice. In Alameda County CA the local assessor doesn't actually file a formal default for six months after taxes are unpaid. So if it was a choice between paying the mortgage or paying the full tax bill, hardship counselors would advise folks to not pay the tax bill but budget to have it paid before the six months were up.

Davidwhitewolf said...

Whoops, my mistake, didn't see that your taxes are rolled into your mortgage. So that Alameda County advice won't apply.

On a Wing and a Whim said...

Are you still paying PMI on your mortgage? If so, you might run the numbers increasing your property value and therefore lowering your monthly payment.

Hang with me on the logic for a moment, here: PMI is mandated as long as your mortgage is a certain percentage of the equity in the house. To reduce the ratio of debt to equity, you can do it the slow way and pay off the mortgage, or see if there's an easy addition (like adding a carport) that will increase the property value of the house sufficiently to get out of PMI payments.

It's a double-edged sword since it leaves you with higher property taxes, more often than not (Check whether your property appraisal must be the city's approved work or a bank will accept a private, non-city-hall appraisal in your neck of the woods), but it is a way to stop pouring money down one drain.