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Re: [columbia_heights] vacant properties

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  • Richard Layman
    One thing that s frustrating is that the OTR website doesn t really talk much about (or at least I can t find it) is how to report these kinds of things,
    Message 1 of 3 , Mar 1 1:31 AM
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      One thing that's frustrating is that the OTR website doesn't really talk much about (or at least I can't find it) is how to report these kinds of things, including houses using the homestead deduction when they are not owner occupied.  (There is information about reporting vacant properties, but not a discussion about the intricacy that you identify.)

      Richard Layman

      >From: "Anne Theisen"
      >Reply-To: "Anne Theisen"
      >To: "Columbia Heights List Serve" ,"Michael Roberts"
      >Subject: Re: [columbia_heights] vacant properties
      >Date: Sat, 28 Feb 2004 23:46:47 -0500
      >
      >
      >There is, however, an easy loophole to paying this 5% tax for vacant
      >properties.  There are property
      >owners who have "proven" residence by providing utility bills for a property
      >they don't inhabit.  They purchase enough gas to keep the pipes from
      >bursting and electricity to keep minimal or timed lights and appliances on,
      >but they live elsewhere.  They frequently are speculating on a potential
      >rise in real estate values and leave their properties empty so that they
      >don't have to deal with renters in the event of a sale.  I personally would
      >rather have a home inhabited for neighborhood safety reasons, but realize
      >that property owners have the right to leave a property empty as long as it
      >is properly maintained.  They should also, however, step up and pay the
      >legal tax levied on owning an uninhabited property.
      >
      >Anne Theisen
      >
      >----- Original Message -----
      >From: "Michael Roberts"
      >To:
      >Sent: Saturday, February 28, 2004 7:56 AM
      >Subject: [columbia_heights] vacant properties
      >
      >
      > > Hi,
      > >
      > > I had tried to send this message the other day, but
      > > for reason unknown to me, it was not posted. Here goes
      > > again...  This is a follow up to a message by Jack a
      > > few days ago.
      > >
      > > Owners of vacant properties are supposed to pay a much
      > > higher tax rate (5% annually of the assessed value
      > > rather than 1%).  Owner-occupied properties get a
      > > discount (from the 1%) on their property taxes in the
      > > form of the "homeowner's deduction."  This subtracts
      > > $30K from the assessed value for tax purposes.  These
      > > rules, however, are poorly enforced.  Owners of many
      > > vacant properties do not pay the higher tax rate and
      > > many even receive the homeowner's deduction.
      > >
      > > Anyone can look up the current assessment and tax
      > > status of a property quickly and easily using the DC
      > > government website.
      > >
      > > Go to:
      > >
      > > http://www.taxpayerservicecenter.com/RP_Search.jsp?search_type=Assessment
      > >
      > > and simply put an address.
      > >
      > > If a vacant property is not paying the proper tax
      > > rate, call the Real Property Administration at
      > >
      > > (202) 442-6691
      > >
      > > Explain this situation and ask them to conduct an
      > > investigation into the assessment and tax rate status
      > > of the property.
      > >
      > > -Michael Roberts
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > > __________________________________
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      > >
      > > URL to this page on the web:
      >http://groups.yahoo.com/group/columbia_heights/
      > >
      > > Yahoo! Groups Links
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > >
      >
      >


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