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Jodi Bakst, Broker Owner of Real Estate Experts, Earns the Certified International Property Specialist Designation

Jodi Bakst, Broker Owner of Real Estate Experts, Earns the Certified International Property Specialist Designation

Certified International ProfessionalJodi Bakst, Broker Owner of Real Estate Experts located in Chapel Hill, North Carolina has earned the Certified International Property Specialist (CIPS) designation, placing her among 3,500 elite real estate professionals in over 45 countries.  The designation was awarded to her by the National Association of REALTORS® for completing rigorous coursework devoted to learning international real estate practices and demonstrating proficiency in international business.

The CIPS designation is synonymous with advanced expertise, a global perspective, and distinct understanding of a global buyer. As a designee, Ms. Bakst has the knowledge and resources to efficiently work with international buyers, including U.S. residents looking to invest overseas, foreign buyers purchasing in the United States, as well as recent immigrants who might be unfamiliar with real estate transaction practices in the United States.

For more information on the CIPS designation, visit  To contact Ms. Bakst directly you can email her at [email protected] or call her at 919-928-5131 x2.

Durham 2019 Property Tax Revaluation

Durham 2019 Property Tax Revaluation

Property Tax Revaluation

Durham is conducting a property tax revaluation in 2019.  In North Carolina, all homes must be appraised for tax purposes at least every 8 years.  Historically, counties throughout the Triangle have reassessed property values either every 4 years or 8 years.  Durham County has decided to undertake a new property tax revaluation on a 3-year cycle.

  • On January 1, 2019 the new property tax values will be effective.
  • On January 30, 2019, the County will mail all Durham County property owners with their new property tax values.
  • If a home owner disagrees with their new property tax revaluation, the Appeals Board Process begins. Appeals must be submitted no later than May 3, 2019.
  • In June Durham County and City will set their tax rates for the year. This is when homeowners will know their actual tax bills for 2019.
  • Durham will not reassess properties for tax purposes until 2023.

See below for detailed information about Durham Counties revaluation process and how to appeal Durham’s 2019 property tax values.Why Is Durham County Reappraising Property Values?

Q.  Why Is Durham County Reappraising Property Values?

A.   North Carolina (via General Statue 105-286) requires all counties to a reappraisal at least once every eight years. Durham County’s last reappraisal was performed in 2016.  The goal of reappraisal is to help ensure the county’s tax burden is distributed equitably based on current property values.

Q.  When Will The Reappraisal Take Effect?

A.  The Effective Date for the reappraisal is January 1, 2019.

  • A notice of the change of value will be mailed to homeowners on January 30, 2019.
  • The new values will be used to calculate the tax bills.
  • Your new tax bill will not be known until the taxing jurisdiction sets the budge in June 2019.
  • The new tax value will remain in place until the next reappraisal which is set for 2023.

Q.  What is Reappraisal?

A.  Reappraisal (also known as revaluation) is a process that resets the taxable value of all real property to its current market value. This includes vacant and improved land, whether residential, commercial, agricultural or industrial.

Q.  What is Market Value?

A.  Market value is the most probable price a property would bring in an open and competitive market. The Durham County Tax Administration Office analyzes the patterns and trends of the local real estate market and use the information to estimate market values for all properties.

Q.  Why is Durham shortening the reappraisal cycle from eight years to three years?

A.  Durham felt that if they waited for eight years to revalue properties, there would be more inequities and in the long run would lead to larger changes in tax values. A shorter cycle reduces the chances of this happening and helps make property taxes “more equitable, predictable and manageable.

Q.  Is There A Circumstance In Which Values Would Change Before A Tax Revaluation?

A.  There are a few important circumstances where a tax value would change before a reappraisal. These include new construction or a change in zoning.  When either of these occurs to an individual property, its market value is adjusted using the rates developed for the most recent reappraisal year.  For example, if a house is built in 2020 on a lot that was vacant in 2019, the new house and lot will be appraised using January 1, 2019 market values.

Q.  How Can You View The Information You Have On File For My Property?

A.  Visit Type in your parcel number and click “Submit to Review & Compare.”

  • Go to Step 1 where you can review the information the County has on file. If any of the information is incorrect, request that the county change the inaccurate information.
  • You request changes by clicking on the “I would like to request Changes” button and provide the County with the accurate information about your property. DON’T FORGET TO PROVIDE YOUR CONTACT INFORMMATION.
  • Or, call 919-560-0300, to talk to County staff and provide them with the information.

Q.  How Do You Know If You Should Appeal?

A.  The County is revaluing properties BASED ON THEIR MARKET VALUE AS OF JANUARY 1, 2019. If you think the 2019 appraised values is too high, you should:

  • Contact your Realtor and have them run comparable sales and evaluate the new property value.
  • If the new County tax value is above the market value, you have grounds to appeal.


  • Go to and type in your parcel number. Click “Submit to Review & Compare.”
  • STEP 1: Click on the RED button under the map labeled “Find Similar Sales.” OR
    • Go back to the “Tax Help” page and click on STEP 2 to compare
  • Once at the “Compare” page, you can refine the results by clicking on the buttons across the top of the map.


Q.  How Can You Appeal?

A.  Before you appeal, the County wants you to do the research outlined above to have a true basis for the appeal. If you think the new tax value is incorrect:

  • Submit your update on line or call at 919-560-0300.
  • Appeals will be sent to the Board of Equalization and Review which is scheduled to begin meeting in April 2019. After the Board hears your appeal, they will send you written notification of their answer.  If you disagree with the Board’s decision, you will have 30 days to file another appeal with the NC Property Tax Commission in Raleigh.  Instructions for how to appeal to the NC Property Tax Commission will be provided in the letter from the Board of Equalization.

 Q.  Do You Need To Attend The Appeal Hearing?

A.    You can appear in person before the Board of Equalization and Review but it is not required. If you are unable to attend, the case will not be rescheduled, it will be heard on the scheduled date.  They will evaluate the information submitted and mail you the decision.

Q.  How Long Does The Appeal Review Process Take?

A.  Appeal reviews take between 30-120 days and largely depends on how many appeals are filed in a given neighborhood. If there is a large number of appeals within a specific neighborhood, then the process may take longer.

Q.  Will My Tax Bill Change?

A.  Not Necessarily. The annual tax bill for a property is based on the tax value AND the tax rate determined by the County.  The tax rate is determined by the taxing jurisdiction in June each year.  Some tax values will rise and some may decrease, it depends on the rate for your area in combination with the tax value.

Q.  Are There Any Property Tax Exemptions?

A.  There are some property tax exemptions in Durham. To see if you are eligible for any of the exemptions:

  • Choose “Property Tax Relief Programs”. The programs are:

Real Estate ExpertsFor more information or to ask questions about your home value, please contact Real Estate Experts at [email protected] or call Jodi Bakst at 919-928-5131.

Nearly Half of U.S. Renters Are Burdened by Housing Costs

Nearly Half of U.S. Renters Are Burdened by Housing Costs

Over the past ten years, the American economy has been on a rapid rise, yet more and more people are struggling to afford rent. According to the new report published by Apartment List, almost half of American renter households can be classified as cost-burdened, spending more than the recommended 30% of their incomes on rent.

Share of cost burdened renters

Essentially half of renter households are still spending more than the recommended amount on their housing costs, while nearly one in four spends at least half of their household income on rent. The number of cost-burdened households reached an all-time high in 2014, even though the cost burden rate was improving. Luckily, the number of rent-burdened households has started to fall and is currently lower than the 2014 peak by 774,000 households. Importantly, 2017 was the first year since 2010 that the number of unburdened renter households decreased, indicating that this year’s improvement in the cost burden rate reflects genuine improvement rather than compositional change. That said, the total number of rent-burdened households remains higher than the 2007 level by 3.1 million households.

In North Carolina, the overall cost burden rate fell from 46.9% to 46.4%. This is well below the national average than the national average of 49.5%.

Rental Housing Cost burden rate is decreasing in the Durham metro area.

According to Apartment List’s report, Durham has the nation’s #41 highest cost burden rate. The cost burden rate decreased from 51.2% in 2016 to 49.4% in 2017. This in turn makes Durham the #41 highest cost burden rate of the nation’s 100 largest metros. 25.0% of renter households in Durham are severely cost-burdened, while 24.4% are moderately burdened. The of cost-burdened renter households in Durham has increased by 9,573 since 2007.

In contrast, the rental Housing cost burden rate is increasing in the Raleigh metro area.

Raleigh has the nation’s #8 lowest cost burden rate.  Yet, the cost burden rate in Raleigh increased from 42.1% in 2016 to 42.5% in 2017. Raleigh has the #8 lowest cost burden rate of that nation’s 100 largest metros. 17.7% of renter households in Raleigh are severely cost-burdened, while 24.8% are moderately burdened. The number of cost-burdened renter households in Raleigh has increased by 13,787 since 2007.

Cost burden rates tend to be highest in coastal areas with high housing costs.

Miami has a cost burden rate of 62.7 percent, the highest of the nation’s 100 largest metros. Nearly one in three cost-burdened renters (30.8 percent) lives in California, New York or Florida. In 20 of the 25 largest metros, a household earning the median renter income would be cost-burdened by the median rent.

Rental Trends: Raleigh vs National Comparisons

Luckily, the number of rent-burdened households has started to fall and is currently lower than the 2014 peak by 774,000 households. That said, the total number of rent-burdened households remains higher than the 2007 level by 3.1 million households.

Signs of improvement can also be seen when we compare growth in the median renter income to growth in the median rent. The chart below shows that the median renter income grew faster than the median rent for the sixth straight year.

rental income gap closing with rent growth

At last, Apartment List explored the relationship between income growth and cost-burden increase. Below is a chart that demonstrates that when income growth outpaces rent growth, cost burden rates will tend to fall. In the Triangle, income has been growing faster than rents, due to the booming job market in the area, which in turn affects the cost burden rate in the Triangle. Large technology companies and vast job opportunities in science and academia make the Research Triangle surrounding Raleigh appealing to new Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) grads. Combined with relatively low housing prices, the Triangle is the next go-to destination for tech workers around the nation. Despite rapidly increasing rent prices, Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill are still more affordable than most tech centers.

Cost burden increases when rent grows faster than income

A lack of affordable housing in areas of economic opportunity remains one of the most pressing issues. Households that struggle to pay rent oftentimes have to cut back other basic necessities, which can result in adverse and long-lasting consequences. While the data do show some improvement, there is still much left to accomplish to ensure that everyone can comfortably afford a place to rest their head.

Real Estate Experts Property Management Company

It’s important to understand what is involved in renting your home, especially if you haven’t done it before. Don’t let that deter you, or intimidate you!  A great property management company is an important part of

the equation, and Real Estate Experts has the knowledge and expertise to help you handle all of the details.

Related Posts: Property Managers Can Make You Money…;Rental Property ManagementAre you thinking of renting out your property?

Trend of Low Inventories

Trend of Low Inventories

low-inventoryWhen you are saying that the Cary North Carolina market has a low inventory it depends on what you are comparing it too.  Are you comparing it to the number of homes on the market last year at the same time?  Are you comparing it to homes in a price range? Or even homes in a certain area?

According to Reuters, “U.S. home sales fell more than expected in December as the supply of houses on the market dropped to a record low, pushing up prices and sidelining some potential first-time buyers”.  They also said, A shortage of affordable homes for sale will frustrate the ambitions of many first-time buyers.  First-time home buyers are forced to stay in rental market longer than planned.  This information was provided by Matthew Pointon, property economist at Capital Economics in New York.

“We expect little growth in sales in 2018, given tight inventories,” said Gregory Daco, chief U.S. economist at Oxford Economics in New York.  Affordability is crimped by rising mortgage rates, posing an additional headwind to sales.

The Cary North Carolina market will fluctuate depending on price and area of the property.   A 6 month supply of property often considered to be a balance market by that National Association of REALTORS®.   When homes sell faster than 6 months it is considered to be a seller’s market.  Likewise, when homes take longer than 6 months to sell that is considered a buyers’ market.

Everyone knows that supply and demand affect price.  When the so called “Housing Bubble”, the demand decreased so much that the supply increased to 4 million houses or more.  The prices of homes took a beating.    Also, the increased inventories of foreclosures, short sales, bank refusing to loan and the home building industries lack on new housing starts all contributed to very low home prices.

“New construction has showed signs of perking up, but remains well below estimates of demand,” said Aaron Terrazas, as senior economist at Zillow. “More importantly, builders face rising labor, materials and land costs making it difficult to build at a price point attractive to entry-level buyers”.

Since that time the economy has improved, and banks have started to lower requirements, interest rates have stayed low and foreclosures have slowed.  Inventory nationwide is reduced to approximately 2 million homes.  When demand is at a constant level and inventory is reduced, home prices trend upwards.   This is because there are the same number of buyers trying to buy less number of homes.

Mortgage rates are now climbing each week in 2018 and consumer confidence level is going up.  This means that Cary North Carolina market is having an increase in demand.   Buyers are now noticing that home prices are increasing.

Spring is almost here and that is the normal busy time of year.  Home prices are going up and inventory is dropping.  So it is time to decide what you want to do before it is too late.

Check Out The Current Market Updates For Our Area

If you’re curious to know what inventory conditions are for your specific market, contact us with the price range and area and I’ll send you a report.

Real Estate Market Update – Cary, Durham, Chapel Hill – January 2018

Real Estate Market Update – Cary, Durham, Chapel Hill – January 2018

Real Estate Market Update: Median Sales Prices Chapel Hill, Durham and Cary North CarolinaReal Estate Market Update:  Sales prices in Chapel Hill, Durham and Cary are on the rise. The three-year trend is excellent with median prices in  Chapel Hill and Cary around the $400,000 mark. Houses in much of the rest of the Triangle, including Durham, are more affordable. Median prices in Durham, NC are about $250,000.  Nationally, housing affordability remained flat for 2017.

To view homes for sale in Chapel Hill NC, visit Real Estate Experts web site.

Real Estate Market Update: Median Days on Market Chapel Hill, Durham and Cary North CarolinaReal Estate Market Update:  Days on Market (DOM) have been are still are amazingly low.  This means that overall houses are selling fast.  In January, however, DOM have increased a bit.  I think this is primarily due to a slightly slower start to the season and the weather.  To be specific; in July 2017 Average DOM were 13 in Chapel Hill, 5 in Durham and 6 in Cary.  In November 2017 this increased a bit to 33 in Chapel Hill, 8 in Durham and 10 in Cary.

In January, this has stretched out a bit more to 36 in Chapel Hill, 10 in Durham and 14 in Cary.  I expect to see these numbers come down as the season heats up.

If you are looking for homes for sale in Durham NC, visit Real Estate Experts web site.


Real Estate Market Update: Months Supply of homes for sale in Chapel Hill, Durham and Cary North CarolinaReal Estate Market Update:  The supply of inventory is incredibly low.  I don’t remember a time when inventory was this low.  In Chapel Hill there is less than 3 months of inventory and in Durham and Cary there is less than 2 months of inventory.  This is truly an excellent time to sell.  If you have been sitting on the fence, with inventory low, it is a sellers market.  Prices are rising.  With interest rates still low, buyers are moving on the opportunity before prices rise further.

If you are looking for homes for sale in Cary NC, visit Real Estate Experts web site.

Real Estate ExpertsReal Estate Experts is a full service real estate firm.  We represent buyers and sellers in the purchase and sale of residential homes.  We pride ourselves in our honesty and integrity, our knowledge of the home purchase and sale processes and our level of communication and responsiveness. We also have a residential property management company where we work with homeowners that want to rent their homes and we work with investors to get them the best Return on Investment (ROI) when purchasing investment property.  If you would like our help with any of these services, please contact us at 919-928-5131 or [email protected]

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