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West Orange Government - Took My Home (Kind of Sort of)

Ok - I closed on my town house in the Woodlands today and the house in the Rock Spring section of town will if all goes well close at the end of the month.  The large nice home of nine years and $200,000 plus in property taxes latter will not be mine soon.  I am not sad but I kind of wish I could have figured out how to keep the big house on Oak Ave with the nice back yard and big family room.  I know to a certain extent the government did take my home.  Yes other factor were in play it would be un true to say it was only the goverment but it would be also untrue to say government had no role in taking my home.  I lost much equity on the deal in nine year in part because the taxes in this town are such that no one will buy homes a the right price.   I love the town the people and community. West Orange is home for me. We have many positive things here.  However, I think we have a moral and political imperative to change so that nice middle class families can stay in nice middle class homes here.  The average household income in this town is some place between $90,000 to $100,000 per year.  The average property tax bill is over $12,000.  To have about 1/8th or more of the family budget go to a every growing blob of medicore public schools  and so so municipal county governence is just wrong.  Please don't cry for me for having a home stolen from me.   I and my famly will be fine in our small and nice town house with less value and thus a lower tax bill.  I will  be ok with a big equity loss.  What I want is people to take action so the this will not happen to an other family.  Think about who you elect on the school board. town council, board of chosen freeholders, and state legislature.  I will be active as I don't want the next guy hurt. 

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john anthony prignano September 17, 2013 at 09:13 PM
Adam The information I read about West Orange incomes does not say NET incomes. It says simply "income" I would think the figures represent gross incomes. Using a NET household income of about $75,000, the $!2,000 average tax bill is just slightly less than one sixth of of the average West Orange family's disposable income. I also read that in West Orange the average gross rent is $1,196 a month, or $14,352 a year. That's a little over 19% of $75,000.
Ryan September 18, 2013 at 03:44 PM
I'm sorry that you felt compelled to move. That must have been a difficult position to be in. I'm curious to know why you chose to buy in West Orange again. You've been consistent in claiming that we get bad value for our taxes here. Why buy here a second time, then?
Adam Kraemer September 19, 2013 at 07:54 PM
@ Ryan - My wife is Orthadox Jew and needs to walk to synagouge. The houses of worship are near the Woodlands. Also despite bad governent policy I like this town.
Kevin March 19, 2014 at 10:42 AM
I live in West Orange since 2010, in a house of decent size with a nice back yard. According to a recent appraisal, the market value is around $465,000 and my property taxes are a touch over $12,000. We'd all love to pay less, but what I don't understand is why Mr. Kraemer was paying so much? You bought at the peak of the market and waited years to appeal your assessment. Why? And why place any part of the blame for having to sell your house on the government? You've placed constrains on where you're willing to live. Can't you walk farther to Temple? Why not blame your wife's Orthadox faith, at least in part, for losing your home? And you state 1/8th going towards property taxes which help pay for education, public safety, and services, is too much, but what about the 1/10 that goes to tithe? What does that go towards? I think West Orange is a great town and, like any, there are things that can be improved (like moving the muni elections to November to save taxpayer $). I just think it's comical that some people who have been overpaying for their taxes by really their own decision making can complain about it. There are plenty of homes in town where you could pay far lower taxes.

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