So today I got my assessment from the county for this year's property taxes. According to the county, in approximately 4 years the value of my home has increase a whopping 44%.
I know what you are thinking when you see that number: surely you must have improvements to your home! Or your neighborhood is just blossoming with others who are making improvements!
Sadly, no. The only "improvements" we have made are to fix the garage door that destroyed itself and the two fences that collapsed this year. Beyond that, not a darn thing. And our neighborhood pretty much remains the mid 1990's neighborhood that it was when we moved here.
I am not sure what this will do to our property taxes other than hike them. which means we will be in arrears (again) for the escrow fund where such money is stored and means our house payment on the whole will go up (again). Our payment has increased 12.5% since we moved in.
Oh there is a good side, I suppose. My theoretical equity has gone up from 6% to 37% in the same period of time. Not that I feel it, of course: it is all lost money until such a time as it is cashed out and even then buying and selling in the same market means that any such equity is essentially lost - it would taking relocating to a new, cheaper market to recapture it.
But it lays open a ticking time bomb for our finances: at 12.5% over four years our payment is increasing by 3.125% a year. Another 10 years at that rate - the outside amount we would have to stay here - and our payment is up another 31.25%, or possibly 42.5% all together.
That, my friends, is simply unsustainable. Even with a crazy increase in value.