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MRIS, March 24, 2008–On April 1, a new law in Montgomery County, MD, goes into effect requiring sellers of homes to provide potential homebuyers with an estimate of what their actual property tax bill and other non-tax charges will be in the first full fiscal year after they purchase the home.This law addresses a common problem that has arisen during the era of swiftly rising residential property values. Although Maryland re-assesses residential properties every three years, the taxable assessment on a specific property is capped at a 10 percent maximum increase per year, unless the home changes ownership. Any new owner will pay tax based on 100 percent of the taxable assessed value for that year, often resulting in a difference of thousands of dollars between what the former owner paid in property taxes and what the new owner must pay.

To assist sellers and their real estate professionals in Montgomery County, the county’s Office of Consumer Protection, has developed an online calculator that determines the approximate property tax and other non-tax charges that a new homeowner would pay on a property during the first full year of ownership. Agents can access the calculator here: www.montgomerycountymd.gov/estimatedtax. By entering the address of any residence, the approximate tax obligation of a potential new homeowner is provided.

To assist its customers, MRIS has made three changes to all Montgomery County public records full displays and printouts:

1. MRIS has added a new label for the Assessment section, which states:

“Tax Fiscal Year 2008 Estimated property tax and other non-tax charges in the first full fiscal year of ownership”

2. Total Taxes label has been replaced with “Total Est. Charges”

3. Assessed Value label has been replaced with “Phase-in Value”

Total Estimated Charges includes all state, county, city (if applicable) taxes and other charges including Solid Waste, Water Quality Protection, Bay Restoration Fund, WSSC, and other Special Charges.

MRIS has made every effort to ensure the total estimated charges in our public records match the amounts shown in the county’s calculator. To be certain that your Active status listings are compliant, agents who have Active residential listings in Montgomery County, MD should double-check the dollar amounts in each active listing to make sure it matches the amount shown in the county’s online calculator.

For more information on this article, contact: Communications@mris.net.

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