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Now playing: The Property Tax Appeal, starring Robert De Niro

Now playing:  The Property Tax Appeal, starring Robert De Niro | real estate economics | Scoop.it
When I first read about Robert De Niro’s pending tax appeal on his estate in the Hudson Valley, I thought of the endless possibilities for our tax appeal blog.  I mean, this is the great Robert De ...
Bruce Turner's insight:

Even Robert De Niro appeals his property tax assessment!

The blog has a bit of fun with that ... for me, it really comes down to the one reference in the blog: 

"One resident took umbrage with De Niro’s appearance in a New York State tourism television advertisement in which the actor claims that his favorite place is the Hudson Valley.  That resident, Bill Hess said: “If he loves it so much … maybe he should help pay to maintain it.”

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The Top 10 real estate trends for 2015

The Top 10 real estate trends for 2015 | real estate economics | Scoop.it
PwC's Emerging Trends in Real Estate forecasts outlines what builders, realtors, and investors can expect.
Bruce Turner's insight:

Trends toward changing use of real estate suggest the need for transformation in provision of professional real estate services.

Consider one factor, transformative technology, as one example:

Driver

Impact

Technology changes economy

Means of production changes – the way we manufacture & build things; buy & sell things changes

New economy changes job structure

Different jobs requiring new KSAs are needed; jobs are valued differently; labour is sourced in new ways

How & where we live & work changes; management perspective shifts

Focus changes from supervision of activities in a ‘factory’-styled environment to accountability for meaningful, on-time results

Demographics (aging), education & professional development CSF in global competition

‘Next gen’ young workers and extended work lives of older workers demand flexibility in work places, training/education, lifestyles

All of the above contribute to demand for changing use of real estate, and for value-added professional real estate services related to making better decisions about real estate.

http://propertyassessment.biz

 

 

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Doing Business Rankings Use Expanded Data Analysis

Doing Business Rankings Use Expanded Data Analysis | real estate economics | Scoop.it
Singapore is the most business-friendly economy in the world, according to the Doing Business 2015 rankings.
Bruce Turner's insight:

Globalization has had a tremendous impact on property markets over the past 30 years. Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in land has increased tremendously. That requires international standards and an efficient, trustworthy regulatory environment. This World Bank report provides evidence of good progress - especially in regions like Sub-Sharan Africa, and emerging Europe and Central Asia. So, while our news media we may find daily media coverage of global conflicts quite discouraging, there is also tremendously hopeful news for a better future - we have but to seek it out.

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Cuso International is seeking a new Chief Executive Officer | Cuso International

Cuso International is seeking a new Chief Executive Officer | Cuso International | real estate economics | Scoop.it
Bruce Turner's insight:

This worthy organization makes a real difference in today's vexatious world.

If you know the individual who has the ingredients to drive it forward, let them know of this opportunity.

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DownloadAsset.aspx?id=88125

Bruce Turner's insight:

Tax system fairness and tax competitiveness are common terms. What they may mean for any one jurisdiction is not terribly clear. While not yet comprehensive, this Scorecard is a solid beginning to encourage practitioners and policy makers to take a fresh view of their systems - against tax principles, and in comparison with similar jurisdictions.

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Following Apple And Starbucks, Amazon Now Faces European Commission Tax Probe

Following Apple And Starbucks, Amazon Now Faces European Commission Tax Probe | real estate economics | Scoop.it
Amazon is now, following in the footsteps of Apple and Starbucks, facing a probe into its tax arrangements from the European Commission. Now that we're seeing the details of these cases, of what the allegations are, it's possible to offer a preliminary opinion as to what is actually going on [...]
Bruce Turner's insight:

Although we may strongly dislike property tax, at least we know what we hate. Reading this Forbes article leaves one mystified as to how (or if) basic tax principles such as equity, neutrality, understandability can possibly survive in a global environment.

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Ow.ly - image uploaded by @cbreCanada (CBRE Canada)

Ow.ly - image uploaded by @cbreCanada (CBRE Canada) | real estate economics | Scoop.it
Bruce Turner's insight:

Good news in the CBRE survey report is that industrial growth is increasing in the face of undersupply. A question to consider is 'what is meant today by 'industrial growth'? It is not the traditional supply of black smoke industry, but new market dynamics driving real estate investment. Knowing something of those new trends, we need also to consider market trends / cycles. One of the leading authorities in that area is Glenn Mueller ... for some of his insight, refer to http://www.slideshare.net/CCIM/commercial-realestatemarketcycleshowtheyaffectyourlocalmarket ;

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2395_1735_Almy_WP14RA1.pdf

Bruce Turner's insight:

There are few sources for reliable data sources and informed opinions on global property taxation. Almy provides most helpful information in the report. I particularly like how he dwells, not just on technical assessment issues, but provides excellent perspective on tax policy issues. While tax principles have global application, they are enshrined in very different ways in various cultures and countries. 

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Tax treatment of crypto-currencies in Australia - specifically bitcoin | Australian Taxation Office

Bruce Turner's insight:

ATO (Australian Tax Office) recently published guidance on crypto currencies like Bitcoin . These begin to answer the vexing question of whether Bitcoin is really a currency.  By definition of a country's currency , it is not. However it is unlikely that countries can totally ignore its potential risk. ATO seems to  have simply left the door open to the possibility in future. 

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China Home Prices Fall in Most Cities on Weak Demand

China Home Prices Fall in Most Cities on Weak Demand | real estate economics | Scoop.it
China’s new-home prices fell in July in almost all cities that the government tracks as tight mortgage lending deterred buyers even as local governments eased property curbs.
Bruce Turner's insight:

While the story seems written 'under the doom', news of decreasing home prices in an overheated market may actually be quite healthy for investors (and homeowners).

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Steeves promises four-year property-tax freeze

Steeves promises four-year property-tax freeze | real estate economics | Scoop.it
Mayoral candidate Gord Steeves is promising Winnipeg a four-year property-tax freeze, claiming the revenue that would be raised by a tax hike wouldn’t be worth the detrimental effect on home owners.
Bruce Turner's insight:

Many jurisdictions in Canada face municipal elections this year. This article is good evidence of that 'silly season'. i.e. A season in advance of elections marked by statements from candidates who (should) know better but who make statements that are sadly misleading and simply wrong-headed.

In Canada, municipal property taxes fund about 35 services for property owners. Freezing property taxes for four years would directly and immediately impact the municipality's capacity to continue delivering those services - providing the APPEARANCE of tax relief, but only deferring and increasing costs. To hit hapless taxpayers beyond this candidate's four year term. 

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It’s official: Zillow will own Trulia

It’s official: Zillow will own Trulia | real estate economics | Scoop.it
During a conference call on the deal, Rascoff said the real ad potential for the two companies, to make some serious profit, is working to move real estate marketing from offline to online.
Bruce Turner's insight:

Information transparency in research, transactions, etc. is a good thing according the economist’s notion of ‘efficient market hypothesis’(EMH). Lack of transparency has been the 'value proposition' for MLS.

This new information platform could be the platform for EMH. It will probably pressure MLS changes too. Better, more accurate & current information in the hands of competent agents / appraisers / researchers can only benefit real estate investors and those who consume professional real estate services (e.g., home owners).

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The Real Estate Hiccups | GeoWarehouse Blog

The Real Estate Hiccups | GeoWarehouse Blog | real estate economics | Scoop.it
Avoid real estate hiccups by being prepared. Things like Parcel Registers and Instrument Images can help! Contact GeoWarehouse today by visiting
Bruce Turner's insight:

As this short blog reminds us, there is no substitute for due diligence. The blog is a pitch for a service (which is available in a limited geography). The critical message is to follow a thoughtful due diligence process - using the tools within whatever market you're working in.

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Leopold’s plan to ‘shake up’ Montreal CRE at Immodev

Leopold’s plan to ‘shake up’ Montreal CRE at Immodev | real estate economics | Scoop.it
Montreal real estate legend Stephen Leopold hopes to revolutionize commercial real estate brokerage in the city for the second time in his career. Stephen Leopold, who introduced the concept of tenant representation in city in the late 1970s, has joined commercial real estate brokerage Immodev, a company that plans to shake up the way commercial real estate deals are conducted in the city.
Bruce Turner's insight:

The question of centralization vs. decentralization is a long-time debate.Leopold is using technology to implement a model that builds on the benefit of both. Real estate, by its nature is local, and requires local market knowledge - whether one works in sales or property assessment. But, to be cost competitive and remain leading edge, professionals benefit from centralized administrative & marketing support, research and and continuing professional development.

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Democracy and the Devil’s Dice – The Express Tribune

Democracy and the Devil’s Dice – The Express Tribune | real estate economics | Scoop.it
If your'e among the growin­g number of citize­ns willin­g to throw the dice, beware: if you lose, devil cannot be cheate­d
Bruce Turner's insight:

Having just read 'The Fourth Revolution - Global Race to Reinvent the State', I appreciated this succinct perspective. Democracy may not be the best vehicle for economic growth. And, in current Western form, it suffers from short-sighted re-election terms and is burdened with focus on interest groups. Its growing awareness of those problems (e.g., sharpened awareness driven by Asian competition) has some hope of wakening the slumbering giant to address these problems.

That is the essential difference - in non-democratic states, the giant (the people) is continually sedated to avoid the distractions of human rights, property rights and so on. In a democracy, the underprivileged have some hope of benefiting from those rights.

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Taxes and economy should be priorities

Taxes and economy should be priorities | real estate economics | Scoop.it
Taxes and economic growth are the most important issues readers participating in this week’s Enterprise poll said would influence their votes in the upcoming municipal election.
Bruce Turner's insight:

Increasingly, our communities choose to face this fundamental challenge of 'taxes vs. services'. Public services are not free - we cannot fund their provision without taxes - but, as this article suggests, we can expand the tax base - through economic development and/or tax policy.

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Paying too much in property taxes? Think again

Looking at effective property tax rates, which measure the actual tax payment as a percentage of market value, can be telling but sometimes puzzling. Struggling cities like Detroit and Bridgeport,
Bruce Turner's insight:

Property tax has been described as the most reviled of all taxes. Well, perhaps we don't feel so bad if we look at the property tax burden of other folks. This article refers to the only reliable and most accurate surveys across the 50 states.

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Tax cap in the works - DEERFIELD VALLEY- Selectboards around the state are considering a resolution calling on the Legislature to implement a two-year cap on the statewide education property tax ra...

Tax cap in the works - DEERFIELD VALLEY- Selectboards around the state are considering a resolution calling on the Legislature to implement a two-year cap on the statewide education property tax ra... | real estate economics | Scoop.it
DEERFIELD VALLEY- Selectboards around the state are considering a resolution calling on the Legislature to implement a two-year cap on the statewide education property tax rate while they work on education funding reforms. Proponents say the cap would provide tax relief to property owners as well as to municipalities that are feeling the impact of escalating school taxes on their property tax revenue. GOP gubernatorial candidate Scott Milne announced his support for a two-year cap on the the ...
Bruce Turner's insight:

This story may be about property tax for education one state, but it is a common refrain with a chorus of fragmented non-solutions due to the political dynamite associated with vested interests.

 

Property tax has been labelled the most hated tax but it is also provides the most reliable and predictable revenue. In this state, the state education funding source is property tax (68%). 

Non-property tax sources (sales, purchase & use, lottery sales) plateaued and then fell over several years. Nothing new in that.

 

The political knee-jerk reaction is often a 'tax cap'. Short-term, that sounds popular with many voters. What they fail to realize is that, a tax cap simply entrenches the inequities in the existing tax system and creates vested interests that are very difficult to reverse - i.e. the 'sunset clause' on tax caps - if their even is a sunset clause - is near impossible to implement. 

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Tax Notes | April 2014 | OECD Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (“BEPS”) Action Plan: Action 1 – Addressing Tax Challenges of Digital Economy | Miller Thomson

In July 2013, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (the “OECD”) released the BEPS Action Plan in response to concerns expressed by policymakers around the world that multinational enterprises (“MNEs”) were engaging in tax
Bruce Turner's insight:

Corporations naturally plan to minimize tax load as part of profit maximization. The taxing authority's perspective of this is the polar opposite of this. Property tax is one of the most difficult to avoid ... but where is the property that will be taxed? And, in a digital age, what is the definition of taxable property? These are questions yet to be answered, and which will undoubtedly be the source of controversy as jurisdictions try to maintain tax revenue while also trying to appear competitive for economic development. Interesting days ahead. 

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Brian Bowman wants to eliminate property tax, replace it with alternate tax

Brian Bowman wants to eliminate property tax, replace it with alternate tax | real estate economics | Scoop.it
Forget about freezing or raising property taxes, Brian Bowman wants to get rid of them altogether. “I know as Winnipeggers we are feeling over-property taxed,” the mayoral candidate said on Friday. “I believe property tax is part of an antiquated…
Bruce Turner's insight:

Municipal elections serve as a good forum for public education.

Candidates, like this one, espouse titillating ideas that encourage people to think about their communities and community leaders.

In Canada, property taxes fund between 40 - 86% of local government services - across diverse communities which provide 30-40 property and social services (the latter increasingly). So, what would be impacts of eliminating property tax and having local governments focus on job creation rather than service provision? Would a replacement sales tax be sufficient to fund basic service level requirements in economic downturns?

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The Age of the Unthinkable

The Age of the Unthinkable | real estate economics | Scoop.it
In The Wall Street Journal, John Micklethwait and Adrian Wooldridge write that tumultuous days in the world's democracies present an opening for conservative ideas to flourish.
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LOOK: Canada Dominates Best New Skyscrapers List

LOOK: Canada Dominates Best New Skyscrapers List | real estate economics | Scoop.it
The best new skyscraper of 2012 is… Mississauga, Ont.’s Absolute World Towers.

The head-turning towers, nicknamed the ‘Marilyn Monroe’ for their ample curves, claimed the Emporis Skyscraper Award given out by the real est...
Bruce Turner's insight:

As a Canadian, it is pleasing to see that this Mississauga, Ontario office tower won such a prestigious award. Getting beyond that brief patriotic euphoria, it is more pleasing to see that, globally, building design is becoming more focused on aesthetics, function and whole-life thinking. With continuing urbanization, it is good to see that we seem to have matured beyond 'my building is taller than your building' adolescence. 

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Goodbye Mobile Apps, Hello Multi-Device Experiences

Goodbye Mobile Apps, Hello Multi-Device Experiences | real estate economics | Scoop.it
Your app runs in a little square.All the money you spend on developers, design teams, content production and infrastructure for your app essentially boils down to a little square. Sometimes it’s a bigger square. Sometimes it’s more of a rectangle. And sometimes your app is responsive and tries to adjust itself as the square changes shape.But in the end, your brand's communications still come down to that little square. Topic: Web CMS.
Bruce Turner's insight:

As we look around us at so many people strangely fixated upon their mobile devices - missing the opportunity to be 'in the moment' of their own lives - might we consider how such behaviour will be viewed in 20 years?

No doubt we will be surrounded by incredible technology (generations beyond Google Glass, Jawbone, etc.), but hopefully we will have lost today's fascination with a small screen as our own life passes us by.

In terms of my favourite topic, how will those advanced conditions affect how we use, invest in or pay taxes upon real estate?

Exciting times ahead - as Will Rogers said many years ago, 'know where people are going and get there ahead of them'. Will was talking about geographic markets, but technology is very much part of today's real estate markets.

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Food appropriation through large scale land acquisitions - IOPscience

The increasing demand for agricultural products and the uncertainty of international food markets has recently drawn the attention of governments and agribusiness firms toward investments in productive agricultural land, mostly in the developing world. The targeted countries are typically located in regions that have remained only marginally utilized because of lack of modern technology. It is expected that in the long run large scale land acquisitions (LSLAs) for commercial farming will bring the technology required to close the existing crops yield gaps. While the extent of the acquired land and the associated appropriation of freshwater resources have been investigated in detail, the amount of food this land can produce and the number of people it could feed still need to be quantified. Here we use a unique dataset of land deals to provide a global quantitative assessment of the rates of crop and food appropriation potentially associated with LSLAs. We show how up to 300–550 million people could be fed by crops grown in the acquired land, should these investments in agriculture improve crop production and close the yield gap. In contrast, about 190–370 million people could be supported by this land without closing of the yield gap. These numbers raise some concern because the food produced in the acquired land is typically exported to other regions, while the target countries exhibit high levels of malnourishment. Conversely, if used for domestic consumption, the crops harvested in the acquired land could ensure food security to the local populations.
Bruce Turner's insight:

Interesting research report ... but,  is 'ethical land grabbing' not an oxymoron?

While it seems a reasonable conclusion that food production could be greatly increased through modernized farming methods, 'ethical' success surely must require good governance and control of corruption in poor countries - as well as education and employment for poor people in those countries.

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