Happy Labor Day!

We wish you and your loved ones a very safe, restful and enjoyable Labor Day Holiday.  Thank you for you continued loyalty and support!

Please be advised that ALL county recorders offices will be closed on Monday September 2nd in observance of Labor Day, as will Western Resources Title.

Understanding Mello-Roos

Understanding Mello-Roos

In purchasing your new home, your future monthly payments will be made up of principal, interest, real property taxes and insurance, but what is the tax for the Community Facilities District, otherwise known as a Mello–Roos District?

Q. What is a Mello-Roos District?

A. Mello-Roos District is an area where a special tax is imposed on those real property owners within a Community Facilities District. This district has chosen to seek public financing through the sale of bonds for the purpose of financing certain public improvements and services. These services may include streets, water, sewage anddrainage, electricity, infrastructure, schools, parks and police protection to newly developing areas. The tax you pay is used to make the payments of principal and interest on the bonds.

Q. What are my Mello-Roos taxes paying for?

A. Your taxes may be paying for both services and facilities. The services may be financed only to the extent of new growth, and services include: police protection, fire protection, ambulance and paramedic services, recreation program services, library services, the operation and maintenance of parks, parkways and open space, museums, cultural facilities, flood and storm protection, and services for the removal of any threatening hazardous substance.  Facilities which may be financed under the Act include: Property with an estimated useful life of five years or longer, parks, recreation facilities, parkway facilities, open-space facilities, elementary and secondary school sites and structures, libraries, child care facilities, natural gas pipeline facilities, telephone lines, facilities to transmit and distribute electrical energy, cable television lines, and others.

Q. When do I pay these taxes?

A. By purchasing an interest in a subdivision within a Community Facilities District you can expect to be assessed for a Mello-Roos tax which will typically be collected with your general property tax bill. These special tax payments are subject to the same penalties that apply to regular property taxes.

Q. How long does the tax stay in effect?

A. The tax will stay in effect until the principal and interest on the bonds are paid off along with any reasonable administrative costs incurred in collecting the special tax or so long as it is needed to pay the expenses of services, but in no case shall exceed 40 years.

Q. How much will the Mello-Roos payment be?

A. The amount of tax may vary from year-to-year, but may not exceed the maximum amount specified when the district was created. In the case of the purchase of a new house within a subdivision, the maximum amount of the tax will be specified in the public report.

Southland Home Sales Jump in July

As seen on DQNEWS.com

Southern California home sales surged in July, rising to an eight-year high for that month as buyers found more homes for sale. The median sale price held steady with the prior month but rose nearly 26 percent from a year earlier, marking the seventh consecutive month with a year-over-year gain exceeding 20 percent, a real estate information service reported.

A total of 25,419 new and resale houses and condos sold in Los Angeles, Riverside, San Diego, Ventura, San Bernardino and Orange counties last month. That was up 17.6 percent from 21,608 sales in June, and up 23.5 percent from 20,588 sales in July 2012, according to San Diego-based DataQuick.

Last month’s sales approached a historically normal level. They were 0.5 percent below the average number of sales – 25,541 – in the month of July since 1988, when DataQuick’s statistics begin. Southland sales haven’t been above average for any particular month in more than seven years.

The median price paid for all new and resale houses and condos sold in the six-county region last month was $385,000, the same as in June and up 25.8 percent from $306,000 in July 2012. The June and July medians are the highest for any month since April 2008, when the median was also $385,000.

The median price has risen on a year-over-year basis for 16 consecutive months, with those annual gains ranging between 10.8 percent and 28.3 percent over the past 12 months. July’s median remained 23.8 percent below the peak $505,000 median in spring/summer 2007. The median fell by $256,000 from that peak to its $249,000 trough in April 2009, and it has now regained just over half – 51.8 percent – of that peak-to-trough loss.

In a sign of continued market confidence, Southern California home buyers continue to put near-record amounts of their own money into residential real estate. In July they paid a total of $5.39 billion out of their own pockets in the form of down payments or cash purchases. That was up from $5.25 billion in June and up from $3.61 billion a year ago.

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