From the Herald News:
If the reasons Theresa Skibicki had to sell her house were lined up like a row of dominos, the latest tax bill gave those tiles a mighty push.
The 76-year-old Skibicki opened her third-quarter property tax bill from the city, saw her taxes had more than doubled, and decided to put her home on the market.
Skibicki, a senior citizen on a fixed income and living in a cherished historic home, is one of scores of Paterson homeowners still reeling from the impact of the citywide property revaluation. Some have vowed to appeal their new assessments, others want to pack up and go.
The bill for Skibicki, which raised her quarterly taxes from about $1,150 to more than $2,460, prompted her to put the house up for sale. But the real estate market may not bear an asking price at the home’s newly assessed value of about $427,000.
Skibicki, like many other homeowners, is disputing the assessed value — assessors did not examine the building’s interior, she said. Now Skibicki feels she cannot pay the roughly $7,000 in taxes due before being able to appeal the assessment to the Passaic County Board of Taxation next April.
Living on a monthly Social Security pension of $740 and about $100 a month more in interest from savings, Skibicki said, she had rented out a one-bedroom attached apartment until December, but three trips to Landlord-Tenant Court soured her on any more renters. She has money in savings, and is worried about what happens when that money runs out.
“That’s all I have,” she said. “What do you do after that?”