Many homeowners have been taken by surprise when the value of their home suddenly seemed to hit freefall. However, it would certainly seem as though there should be one advantage to dropping home prices. Many homeowners assumed that when the value of their homes fell, their property taxes would as well. This has not been the case in many areas though.
In some cases; homeowners have been shocked to discover that not only have their property tax bills not decreased, but they have actually increased. This has been quite a surprise for homeowners as they struggle to understand why they are paying more in taxes on homes that are not worth as much as they were just a year ago.
The reason for this relates to the complex manner in which property taxes are calculated in many areas. One of the biggest problems, especially in Nevada, is the fact that property tax increases were capped during the housing boom. During this time home values skyrocketed rapidly. Today, the values of homes in these same areas are falling; however, the decreases have not actually been enough to compensate for the increases of just a few years ago. Consequently, the values of homes would need to decrease sharply over a short period of time in order for property tax bills to decrease. While declining property values have certainly been a problem, they simply have not decreased enough in many areas to provide any relief from property tax bills.
As the rate of defaulted loans and foreclosures continue to soar in many locations, numerous counties have discovered that the rate of unpaid properties taxes is also on the rise. The metro Detroit area, in particular, is experiencing a record high rate of unpaid property taxes. Detroit is currently considered to be one of the worst housing markets in the United States based on the decline of housing prices and increase of foreclosures. The lack of jobs and weak economy in the greater Detroit area are considered to be the primary factors contributing to the housing crash in the area.