Community Manager
Community Manager
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Content provided courtesy of USAA.

 

 

From paint color to property tax, homeownership is all in the details. When you’re deliberating over those details, make sure you’re familiar with state and local regulations.

 

Know your neighborhood rules.

 

16. Will a change in exterior color, siding or roof style require special approval from your city or homeowners association?

 

17. Does the neighborhood have restrictions on the type or height of a fence?

 

18. Are there any rules on the number or type of vehicles, such as campers and boats that can be parked at a property?

 

19. Are there restrictions on the types of business you can run out of your home?

 

20. Are particular types of animals, sizes or breeds prohibited in the neighborhood?

 

21. Can sheds or outbuildings be built on your property?

 

Learn your state’s tax rules. It might save you some cash, like in these examples:

 

22. South Carolina: Soon after closing, new homeowners should head to the county assessor’s office to apply for the discounted 4 percent property tax for permanent occupants. If not, their tax bill comes out at 6 percent, which can be a large difference.

 

23. Maryland: First-time homeowners are exempt from state transfer taxes, which are usually split 50-50 between the seller and the buyer.

 

24. Texas: Seek a homestead tax exemption. Homeowners could end up saving as much as 20 percent on their property tax each year if they file for it.