NYSAR: Cuomo proposes $1.7 billion property tax credit

From the New York State Association Realtors:

Gov. Andrew Cuomo has proposed a $1.7 billion plan to provide property tax credits by tying property taxes to household income. The program would be phased in over four years and provide credits to more than one million middle-class homeowners and more than one million renters.

Homeowners would be eligible for the credit if they earn less than $250,000 a year in adjusted gross income and if their communities stay under the property tax cap. A homeowner’s property taxes would have to exceed six percent of income in order to be eligible. For renters, the credit would be available to taxpayers making up to $150,000 if their annual gross rent attributed to property taxes exceeds six percent of their income.

Cuomo said his proposal would be another way to cut down on New York’s property taxes, which are among the highest in the nation. The plan will be part of his proposed 2015-16 budget and State of the State address happening on January 21. The event will be streamed live at

Albany First-Time Home Ownership Opportunities

From Council Member 6th Ward, Richard Conti

The Albany Community Land Trust recently received an award for acquisition and repair of 10 homes for eligible first-time homebuyers in the City of Albany. The $400,000 award from NYS Homes and Community Renewal is for the Community Land Trust’s Buyer’s Choice Grant Program. Qualified participants in the program will receive assistance to buy and fix up a home affordably in the City of Albany, including:

$30,000 toward repairs and down payment to purchase a house in Albany;
expert advice in choosing a property and assistance in rehabbing it;
access to additional programs such as energy efficiency repairs;
unbiased homebuyer education and financial advising.

The Albany Community Land Trust successfully used a similar award in 2010 to assist 9 families in fixing up properties and becoming new homeowners. Buyers built equity, stabilized their housing costs, created a legacy for their family, and helped the city’s tax base. The Albany Community Land Trust is a community-based non-profit organization committed to rebuilding neighborhood housing stock and creating high quality permanently affordable housing in the city of Albany. The Community Land Trust has renovated 69 properties with 92 units. Currently the Land Trust is also managing 44 units of quality affordable rental and has 4 properties under development. To apply for the program, the first step is to attend a free HomeBuyer 101 course. Held monthly, the next orientation will be held on Tuesday, February 3, 2015. Sign up at or call 434-1730. For more information about the Albany Community Land Trust visit For more information about this home buying program call Louise McNeilly AT 434-1730, ext. 405.

Honest Advice with a Sophisticated Apporach

The best way to evaluate your business is to listen to your clients. As we embark on our fourth year, here is what our clients and community partners are saying.  I was blown away by the support of our clients. Thank you to all of the stars who made this video possible: Maureen, Derek, Cathy, Tim, Jennifer, Megan, and Amy. We started the project with the intent to make one 90 second video, but as we filmed it was apparent our clients and supporters had alot more to say. So we’ll be unveiling five more videos over the coming weeks because we just couldn’t pack it all into one. Monticello, Licensed Real Estate Broker has been a great story to tell, and I look forward to sharing more.

Another Happy Monticello Homebuyer

This is why we do what we do. It’s always rewarding when my clients are truly happy with their home purchase. These clients just closed just on a house in Clifton Park.

My wife, young daughter and I give Alex Monticello the highest recommendation to anyone who is looking to buy or sell a home in the Capital region. We began our house hunting process in June 2014 as we contemplated moving to the Albany area from the lower Hudson Valley region. Though both my wife and I had some experience working in the area, the Capital region was a relatively foreign place for us. We began the process with some reservations, a hint of anxiety (and then some), and time constraints. To complicate the matter, we had a tight window to find and close on a house so that I could start my new job in January 2015. Enough about us. Here is why Alex gets our highest recommendation.

Alex’s knowledge of the market conditions, nuances of different neighborhoods, quality of the school districts, styles of homes, and watchful eye for potential issues that we came across during our initial viewings became invaluable assets during the process. Complimenting his professional expertise as a broker, Alex approaches his craft with the kind of personal touch that nervous, first-time homebuyers needed. A good analogy is finding a great doctor who is both the best at his/her profession and has an unsurpassed bedside manner. In our opinion, a great real estate broker has both of these qualities.

Honestly, neither my wife nor I knew exactly what we were looking for. We had a budget, a preference in the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, and the desire to be relatively close to Albany, but needed a decent size backyard for our daughter. Other than that, we learned our preferences along with Alex as we went along. Alex was patient as we looked at dozens of homes and started checking and crossing off our preferences. He remembered all of our preferences as we went from house to house and neighborhood to neighborhood. Throughout it all, we were very happy with Alex’s ability to recall what we liked in each house that we looked at, but also what we didn’t like about others. At a certain point, we had looked at so many houses that we were uncertain if we were being too picky about the negatives, and if we would ever find our dream home. Oftentimes, Alex’s upbeat personality and patient, yet diligent, approach helped us to maintain the same positive approach until we found our home.

Once we were ready to make an offer, Alex prepared us for the next phase of the house hunt. He explained the whole process from start to finish, kept us apprised of every new development, gave us helpful pointers and suggestions, answered endless questions from me (the neurotic husband) via email and phone, and helped carry us past the finish line. Furthermore, Alex’s referrals for an attorney, insurance agent, loan officer (for the mortgage), inspector, and all the other parties involved in the final process were equally professional, knowledgeable, and pleasures to work with.

Again, we highly recommend Alex Monticello for his professionalism, diligence, availability, responsiveness, and his character. Though we have yet to sell a home, Alex will be our first choice when that time comes. I know that the process of selling a home with Alex will be equally satisfying. – Jihoon Kim, Clifton Park