Housing Tax Incentives Benefit Young Owners the Most

Housing tax incentives mostly benefit younger households, according to research from the National Association of Home Builders.

The average mortgage interest deduction peaks for taxpayers in the 35 to under-45 age group, followed by the 18 to 34 aged taxpayers, and declines as the taxpayer gets older, according to the research.

“Any tampering with this deduction would have a disproportionate impact, as a share of household income, on younger home owners who have relatively higher mortgage interest payments,” said Robert Dietz, assistant vice president for Tax and Policy Issues for NAHB.

Source: The National Association of Home Builders (09/28/2010)

How to Help a Family Member Buy a Home

Helping someone close to you buy a low-cost property – $50,000 or less – is a fairly straight-forward transaction, although it may require specific legal advice, says Charles Carter, an attorney and a consultant at Haint Blue Realty in Mount Pleasant, S.C.

Carter suggests that buying a property outright, using the gift exclusion ($13,000 for singles; $26,000 for married couples) to pay for a down payment and closing costs and then giving the recipient a 30-year mortgage on the remaining amount at 5 percent interest is a good way to go.

There won’t be any gift taxes. And the mortgage holder may later cancel the mortgage and gift what remains on the loan as another annual gift-tax exclusion.

Source: McClatchy-Tribune News Service, Charles Carter (06/03/2010)

Top 10 Most Heavily Taxed States

It’s April, so people’s thoughts are turning to taxes, and where they live makes a big difference in how much they pay.

Here are the 10 states with the highest taxes, including property, individual income, sales, alcoholic beverages, tobacco, motor vehicles, hunting and fishing, motor fuels, death and gift taxes, as well as insurance premiums. The per capita tax was derived by adding up all the taxes and dividing the total by the number of citizens.

1. Vermont, $3,861
2. Hawaii, $3,856
3. Connecticut, $3,596
4. Minnesota, $3,203
5. New Jersey, $3,024
6. New York, $3,019
7. Massachusetts, $2,953
8. Washington, $2,553
9. Wyoming, $2,357
10. Pennsylvania, $2,223

Source: Forbes, Matt Woolsey (03/30/2009)

Atlanta is a money pit…

I was very disappointed when I saw the below article on creative loafing.  My water/sewer bill is already ridiculous! Now what??  Sheesh- people complain about how expensive it is to live in NY- to me, Atlanta is worse… aleast New Yorkers make comparable wages …..Can you tell right now that I’m not really feeling ATL?  Well, I’m not feeling ANY place that continues to hit me in my pocket!

Massive water/sewer rate hike may be on the way

April 25th, 2008 by Scott Henry in News

Atlanta residents already bracing for a potential tax hike may also be facing a sharp jump in their water and sewer bills.

Although the Department of Watershed Management won’t deliver its proposed budget to the City Council until May 1, a highly placed source in City Hall says the department is planning to ask for a dramatic 25-percent rate increase.

The department had recently sought to enact a “drought surcharge” to offset residents’ lower water usage – and thus lower water revenue – but was rebuffed by the Council.

“It seems unfair to ask people to conserve water and then penalize them for doing it,” says Councilwoman Clair Muller.

The presumption is that Watershed would simply roll the increase into its upcoming budget proposal, which was already anticipated to include higher rates to pay for the next round of sewer fixes. But Muller says the rumored 25-percent hike is much steeper than was expected – and is likely to inflame more controversy in a City Hall already grappling with a budget crisis.

If such a large increase in water rates is proposed, Muller says she will move to postpone future clean-water projects so the city can keep rates lower but still meet a federal consent order to repair its aging sewers.

Ok, I’m sorry…

I have not provided you with many neighborhood updates. I know, I’m a bit disappointed too- you can stop emailing me 🙂 I’ll get back on the ball. Time has not been on my side.

So.. what’s new?

Crime Task Force

Well on January 20th we had a Neighborhood Watch or Crime Task force meeting at the Grounds Coffee Shop to discuss citizen patrol. John Pavlin, the 2nd VP of WEND (West End Neighborhood Development) was the host. Many great ideas were put on the table by residents. Some of which includes:

· Hiring off duty police (more on this from a neighbor in a future post),

· Burglar proofing our homes/cars

· Court watch- we need presentation at the hearings so criminal will not get off

· Citizen Patrol(driving, walking and reporting suspicious activity)

· Having a phone tree of all those next to you (do you know your neighbors?)

· Joining the citizen patrol- which is simple… just do your part! Look out and report crime.

· Working with our Youths and Schools!! This will help reduces some of the vandalism and petty crime

What we are doing: Being active. Making our presence known throughout the entire West End. Not hiding in our homes. Document and reporting. Walking , driving, watching. Changing our community OURSELVES. NOT living in FEAR. (don’t let me start preaching!)
If you’d like more information I can provide you with a copy of a phone tree log, and some hand outs.


Vonda Henry had a lovely “game” party on Saturday!! I’m disappointed I didn’t take pictures so you could see and get a feel of how loving our community is. It was wonderful seeing old and new neighbors come together, share restoration experiences, food and laugh. Not to mention that Vonda’s house left my jaws hanging!!! I will get some pictures- the restoration she’s doing on this home is unbelievable. Just a teaser : built-in’s, claw foot tubs, columns, crown moulding, four fireplaces, hardwoods, wide hall, glass knobs, natural wood mouldings (not the over painted crap I’m living with- she scraped off her paint) ..and the list could go on and on. You will have to see the before and after pictures to really GET how much work and love she is putting in! I’m sure you too will admire her vision.


We had a BeltLine Cram Session on the 23rd . Our Parks Recreation and Cultural Affairs committee are on it!

Danielle Carney was the host for this informative event. I will keep you informed of upcoming events since we will have these sessions often, BEFORE we have the big sessions with the BeltLine at their Study Group meetings. This is just to help US- be on one accord with our vision so when we meet with the Org, and at these study groups we can be clear about our vision and what we want. The study group sessions will not only consist of West End/Westview or West side residents- so we need to represent in numbers and with our list.

Roland K. Young provided us with an overview of how the steering committee and study groups are formed. We also had some insight on the time line. We have not had a meeting yet here for the West End- so we’re getting the jump a little early. You can obtain information at the www.beltline.org/beltlinebasics and look up “study groups”

Key dates: 1/29 Southwest Study Group (Atlanta Metro College) 6:30PM (area 2 Avon, University, Dill- Not Historic West End/Westview…we’re in area 1 which will start in March/April )

2/7 8PM quarterly briefing

Beltline Tours: 404-446-4400

BeltLine Partnership

As of last week, there trail had begun on White Street…did you see it? I’ll have to get there to get some pictures of the developments. This is just ONE drop in the huge bucket- let’s not lose momentum and the desire to be involved.

For the month of February I, and others within the West End community (Leeza) will be participating in a door to door canvas for the SouthEast and West crest of Atlanta. We will be in the West End on the last Saturday’s of the month. We are knocking on every OTHER door (or so) to informed residents about the BeltLine, answer questions and leave information. We will have a badge and BeltLine tee shirts so you can recognize us. Please be open to receiving the information. Many of the volunteers are teens and will need your patience and support. This is a wonderful thing they have volunteered to do on their Saturday!


The Hammond’s House has a new exhibition! Experience the Magnitude! Paintings of Sedrick Huckaby. You’ll love it and will want to run out and paint. 503 Peeples Street. http://www.hammondshouse.org


Parks Recreation and Cultural Affairs meeting will be held Jan 31st interested in joining contact Evelyn Washington, Chair at ewcwashington@yahoo.com

It’s Our Neighborhood Association will meet tonight at 7PM, a new President is being elected- located at Fired Station #17

Notes/Comments/ Misc.

I am acting as the contact for the Recreation Subcommittee under PRCA that will develop and support multi generational and senor activities with NPU-T. I need your suggestions!

Our West End Newsletter will have a new print coming out soon! Be on the look out in your stores, West End Print Shop and at the Grounds Coffee shop

NPU-T will be at it again in Feb… more on this later..

Also our Website will be up soon.

For Tax Relief check out www.fultonassessor.org and search “Tax Relief” many exemptions listed. HELP OUR SENIORS!!! Make sure they are aware of this relief. We need them in our community and lives-

I am planning to put together some Information session for ALL within our community. I need Tax advisor’s and specialists. Do you know anyone working for the IRS??? HELP!!

I’m sure I forgot something. But will edit and update later.

Be blessed,