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Sunday, April 3, 2011

Which Home? Zimmerman's 'Poor' Friend Margaret is a Real Estate Investor

Jake Zimmerman is the Democratic candidate running for the St. Louis County Assessor's Office. During his campaign he has been running a commercial titled "Why I'm Running". In it he tells a story about his friend Margaret (Pictured above left):

"Let me tell you about my friend Margaret. Margaret bought her house in 1954. Margaret is now paying $4,000 a year in property taxes. Margaret's income has not gone up from last year to this year, her social security check stays the same, her retirement check stays the same but what doesn't stay the same is that tax bill. That tax bill has been going up every two years come rain or come shine. I don't want to see somebody like Margaret taxed out of her home."

Here is the commercial:

As I pointed out in another Article, Margaret is a Progressive Activist who lives in a large, 2,300 sqft, $300,000 home located in the very nice neighborhood of Webster Groves in St. Louis County, which would explain her $4,000 taxes.

In the commercial, Jake seems concerned that Margaret is going to get taxed out of her home.

My question to Jake is....Which Home?

Jake's friend, Margaret Blumer Hasse, seems to be an avid real estate investor. The large green two story house in Jake's commercial is only one of two homes that Margaret 'owns'.

According to stlouisblockshopper.com, in June of 2009 Margaret and her husband sold a 1,300 sqft home on Pacific Avenue in Webster Groves North for $27,500. They seem to have sold this property at a loss because according to the St. Louis County tax assessor records in 2009 the home was assessed at $133,000. The unusually low price might reflect extreme damage or possibly a sale to a relative.

Eager to get back into the real estate investor's game, only one month later Margaret bought a smaller home (968 sqft) in the same area on Kuhlman Lane for $99,000. And according to the St. Louis County Assessor's Office, Margaret still owns this property and IS paying the taxes even though the property was assessed in 2010 at $128,000. According to stlouisblockshopper.com, the taxes for this property in 2008 were over $2,000 when the property assessment was actually higher at $144,000. So Margaret has had her taxes lowered on this property in the past 2 years, ironic isn't it?

So it would seem that Jake's friend Margaret is SOOO Poor that just two and a half years ago she could afford to sell a house at a $100,000 loss and only a month later turn around and buy another home for $100,000. All the while she is still able to afford to pay over $4,000 in taxes on her primary home and pay about $2,000 in taxes on what we can assume is her investment property that she probably rents out.

Wow... if that is Jake Zimmerman's definition of poor then where do I sign up?

As you can see, Jake Zimmerman thinks it's acceptable to mislead the public into thinking that his 'Poor' friend Margaret is in dire need of help that only he can provide as St. Louis County Tax Assessor.

Some one better tell him that if he is elected he can't help with taxes anyway since an assessor doesn't write legislation, they just assess property value.

While your at it, pass along the fact that his poor "friend" Margaret seems to be a Real Estate Investor and doesn't appear to be so........Poor.

Establishment Political Tactics.... Gotta Love it.



Anonymous said...

The first step into sanity in assessments is to have an elected assessor. The second is to hold him or her accountable for proper assessments. There needs to be incentive to get the assessment right, which is not there now. If the assessment is wrong, oh well we goofed. How about a penalty in the form of tax reimbursement if the house sells for less than its assessed value? Maybe even a double or triple amount to encourage the politicians to get it right.

Anonymous said...

Our assessment just went down tremendously. Will this mean my taxes will go down appreciably as well? I would hope so but public schools are the reason for the high taxes. I am willing to bet if our taxes go down it will not be comparable to the lowered assessment. No one has ever inquired about or looked at our house to make the assessment in the 25 years we have lived in Webster Groves. In that time, our taxes have gone up and up and it is all thanks to the Webster Schools. It isn't our assessment that is driving us out of our house, it is the taxes.