The City of Hendersonville NC released a fantastic video recently highlighting what makes Hendersonville so great.  I wanted to share it with you so that you can get a glimpse of our beautiful community as well as the wonderful people who inhabit it. 

City of Hendersonville, NC from City of Hendersonville on Vimeo.

Just let me know when you are interested in becoming a part of our Hendersonville family and I’ll be happy to help you put down roots here.

Rich Cooke, your Western North Carolina real estate specialist

Originally posted on my Western North Carolina real estate blog here: http://rich-cooke.com/2012/02/02/what-makes-hendersonville-nc-great/.

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Are You Paying Too Much for Your Property Taxes?Property taxes are one of the inevitable costs of owning your home in Hendersonville.  How much you pay in taxes is determined by the value the county places on your property.  However, since it is not possible for the county to go out and re-assess every property in its jurisdiction every single year, your property taxes may be based on the value your home was assessed at several years ago.  Because property values have declined so much in the last few years, this could mean that you are paying hundreds, if not thousands of dollars more than you should.  How do you determine whether you are paying too much for your property taxes?

While North Carolina law requires each county to reassess the property values in their area every eight years, Henderson County passed a law in 1995 to do so every four years instead.  The last reassessment was done in 2007.  Currently, the county is in the process of reassessing properties to current market value.  If you have recently received the reassessed value of your home, make sure to check over the paperwork to make sure that all the information is correct, including square footage, bathrooms, bedrooms, etc.  This can have an impact on the value your Hendersonville home is given.

If you feel that the appraised value of your home is incorrect (it’s much higher than what you think your home can realistically sell for or it’s not valued similarly to other homes in your area), you can file an appeal.  The first step is an informal appeal.  Included in your reappraisal notice will be a form that you can fill out to file your informal appeal.  Your area’s appraiser will then review the information you provide to determine whether it supports a change.  If the results of the informal appeal are unsatisfactory to you, you can file an appeal with the Board of Equalization and Review.  After that, you can appeal to the North Carolina Property Tax Commission and, finally, the North Carolina Court of Appeals.

When you decide to file an appeal, make sure you have proper evidence to support the reason for your disagreement with the assessed value.  Keep in mind that you can’t use the sales statistics of Hendersonville homes after January 1, 2011 for current property values.  Some good evidence to provide when appealing your property tax assessment include:

  1. Your own professional appraisal done based on values before January 1, 2011.
  2. Sales report of properties comparable to yours that were sold before January 1, 2011.
  3. Report of comparable listings on the market in your area existing on or before January 1, 2011.
  4. 2010 income and expense statements if the property in question if an income-producing property.
  5. Proof of data errors on the county’s reassessment, including amount of bedrooms, bathrooms, square footage, etc.

While the Henderson County Tax Assessors office does not have the authority to lower your taxes, getting a correct and up-to-date valuation of your Hendersonville property will give you the information you need to speak to your tax collector about it.  If you feel you are paying too much for your property taxes, follow these steps to get a reassessment of your Hendersonville home.  For more information on the appeal process in Henderson County, please call the Tax Assessor’s office at (828) 697-4870.

Rich Cooke, your Western North Carolina real estate specialist

Our fair city has jumped onto the social networking train. The City of Hendersonville has now joined Facebook to keep residents up-to-date with local news, events and other information about the City. If you have a Facebook account, all you need to do is login to your Facebook account and then go to the City of Hendersonville Facebook page. Once you click the “like” button on the city’s page, any updates made to the page can be viewed in your Facebook account’s live news feed. The city plans to use its Facebook page to release local announcements, press releases and official photos. This is just the next step in Hendersonville’s goal to become more available to its citizens in this every-increasing technological age.

The City of Hendersonville joins Facebook.  Click here to become a fan.

The City of Hendersonville also recently launched its revamped website, where website visitors can view City Council agendas and minutes from their meetings, job opportunities, access information on the different City departments, learn about the city and more.

The City of Hendersonville has joined Facebook in an effort to keep up with the same technology its citizens utilize. This is just the beginning of the “new” City of Hendersonville. Come back often to see what’s next for our fair city.

Don't get a lemon.  Use Rich Cooke for your Hendersonville real estate needs.

Henderson County is building a new CNG refueling station that will be open to the public.

Thanks to a stimulus grant, Henderson County has broken ground on its own CNG station.  CNG (compressed natural gas) is a cleaner alternative to propane, gas or diesel and can save the county around $1.50 per gallon once the CNG conversion is completed.  Another positive reason to use CNG is that it decreases our nation’s dependence on foreign oil, the base for our petroleum use.  Construction of the CNG filling station is expected to be completed by this October.

While Henderson County vehicles will be converted to CNG (two CNG-run buses have already been purchased for the Apple Transit System), the goal of the new filling station is also to get Henderson County residents to consider using CNG in their personal vehicles instead of other, harsher fossil-based fuels, such as petroleum-based gasoline or diesel.  There are already CNG fueling stations in Arden and Asheville.  They are going to make the new CNG filling station a public fueling station instead of just for private County use.

If you’re interested in converting your own vehicle into a cleaner CNG-run vehicle, there are several things to consider first, such as the cost of conversion, seeing if your car can handle the weight of the canisters that hold the CNG, EPA standards, availability of refueling stations and more.  To find out more about how to convert your vehicle to natural gas, click here.

With Henderson County building a CNG station, it’s nice to know that they take the environment seriously as well as using our tax dollars wisely.

Don't get a lemon. Contact Rich Cooke for all your Hendersonville real estate needs.

The Full Moon Follies is an ECO fundraiser in Hendersonville on June 26, 2010.  Reserve your tickets today!Most people are today understand that we need to help out the burden placed on our planet by “going green”.  This means reducing your carbon footprint wherever possible by reducing the amount of waste you create, reducing the amount of energy you consume and reusing and recycling items whenever possible.  ECO’s Marvelous Malarkey group has put together a fun Full Moon Follies fundraiser in downtown Hendersonville on Saturday, June 26, 2010.

ECO has kept the idea of “thinking locally” firmly in mind when developing this event.  Local businesses and restaurants have donated food and beverages.  Local printer Hendersonville Printing Co. was hired by ECO to create the invitations.  And local talent will be performing, including Hendersonville’s very own all female a cappella group The Atomic Sisterhood.  In addition to The Atomic Sisterhood, singer/guitarist Tania Battista, rocking duo Carol Deurmit & Steve Whiteside, singers Pam and Don McMahon and storyteller Chuck Breckheimer will be performing.

There will be a raffle for great, fun prizes, including a garden scarecrow, local Christmas tree, custom hula hoops, a clothesline that will be installed for free and even a truckload of goat manure from the Carl Sandburg house as well as tons of other great prizes.

ECO plans on making this a low waste event, just like last year’s Marvelous Malarkey.  At that event, the leftover food and other waste only generated a total of two bags of trash for all 110 attendees, thanks to the use of vegetable-based plastic cups, paper napkins and paper cups.  The plates were provided by Camp Glen Arden and were washed and returned afterwards.

Tickets are $50 each or $90 per couple.  All proceeds help fund ECO’s ongoing efforts to promote recycling, renewable energy and clean water as well as keep local people working.  All attendees must make reservations in advance of the event.  If you’re interested, please call 692-0385 or visit Eco-WNC.org.  Let’s help keep Hendersonville on the “green” path.  Think locally and help globally.

Rich Cooke, your Hendersonville real estate specialist

Henderson County’s very own Jan King is named North Carolina’s Principal of the Year.  Jan King is principal of Mills River’s Glenn Marlow Elementary School.  Already named Henderson County Principal of the Year, Ms. King went on to win the regional title as well.  That put her in the running with seven other regional winners to ultimately win the Principal of the Year honor for the entire state.  As the 2010 winner, Ms. King will serve on the State Superintendent’s Principal’s Advisory Committee, serves as a State Board of Education advisor for one year, serves on the Board of Directors for the North Carolina Public School Forum for one year and will head up the selection committee for the 2011 Wachovia Principal of the Year.

Please join me in congratulating Henderson County Principal Jan King for being named North Carolina’s Principal of the Year.  It’s an honor richly deserved and shows the hard work and dedication of our Henderson County Schools to the education of our children.  Way to go, Principal King!

Looking for a way to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with the family?  Come to the March of the Leprechauns Parade in downtown Hendersonville, NC on Saturday, March 13, 2010.  Hosted by Hendersonville’s Historic Downtown Shopping District, the March of the Leprechauns Parade starts at 10am.  You’ll see hundreds of participants dressed up as leprechauns parading down the streets of Hendersonville.  Everyone is not only invited to come see the parade, but are encouraged to dress in your finest greenery and participate in the parade as well.  If you wish to join in on all the leprechaun fun, simply fill out an application at Downtown Hendersonville’s website.  You have until tomorrow, March 5, 2010, to apply.  So hurry!

For more info about the parade, please contact Karen Shirlin at 828-697-2022.  I hope you get a chance to come down to watch or participate in the March of the Leprechauns in Hendersonville, NC on Saturday, March 13, 2010.