|Assessing News and Notes|
On December 17th, the Reading Board of Selectmen held the annual Tax Classification Public Hearing as required by law in order to establish the fiscal year 2014 tax rate. The Board of Assessors presented materials to assist the Selectmen in making their determination.
The options available for consideration were the selection of a Minimum Residential Factor (which determines whether the tax rate would be different for commercial versus residential property), selection of a discount for open space, and the granting of both a residential exemption and/or a small commercial exemption.
The Selectmen voted against a residential exemption, typically seen in communities with high rental properties, since Reading is largely an owner occupied community. They voted against both an open space discount and a small commercial exemption because the assessors were unable to identify properties that meet those descriptions.
However, the Board of Selectmen did adopt a Minimum Residential Factor of 1 which means that Reading will, once again, have a single tax rate. The tax rate for all classes of properties will be $14.74 per thousand of value. This rate represents a reduction of $0.20 from last year’s rate of $14.94.
The average single family value for FY 2014 is $446,100 which represents about a 3.1% increase in assessed value over last year. When applied to the new tax rate, the estimated average single family tax bill will be $6,575 or 1.76% above last year.
Commercial values declined slightly with an average assessment of $1,439,700 and an estimated tax bill of $21,221 which is down about 5% from last year. This is largely due to the decrease in the tax rate along with the reclassification of some properties.
Fiscal year 2014 tax bills will be mailed before the end of the year. For those tax payers wishing to pay before the end of the year, please contact the Office of the Tax Collector at 781-942-9023 after December 22nd for details.
Exemptions are available to those individuals that meet certain criteria. Persons that may qualify for an exemption include disabled veterans, a blind person, a surviving spouse and seniors. Information and applications for exemptions can be obtained from our office or on line at: http://www.readingma.gov/assessor/pages/exemptions