A little bit goes a long way: that’s what we want you to remember when considering something called the “millage rate.” What is the millage rate? Simply put, it’s a property tax rate defined by the tenths of a cent applied to assessed property value. Might not seem like much, but when you add it all together, that’s something every GR homeowner, home buyer, or home seller would very much like to know….

It Makes for a Drastic Change in the GR Property ValueGR property value scale

What’s going to happen to the GR property value starting this July is a slight dip in the property tax rate. Yes, it sounds like a good thing but not when you have a particular relationship going on with the millage (the actual tax rate per tenths of a cent) and the actual property value. And here’s the great thing about Grand Rapids these days: the GR property value all around is actually going up. Great for the market, but not so good for actual tax dollars even if the tax rate drops a bit.

This is what it’s going to look like very soon: we’re going to see a drop from 9.1518 mills to 9.1515 mills. That’s .0003 mills per $1K in property value. The reason why the millage is dropping (hence the property tax rate per homeowner will be dropping just a tad) is because the actual property value is going up. It’s all about balance.

This ensures the city’s subsidy to the convention and visitors bureau sits at a steady $50K. Look at it like a scale, for instance. Both sides need to be even. If overall GR property value starts to climb, Grand Rapids will ultimately have to see that the millage rate goes down.

And the Millage Rate Doesn’t Have to Go Down a Whole Lot!

That scale can crash and burn just from one ounce of an ounce of a feather landing on one side, so when you think about it, the real estate market is very much like a balance. Keep it steady, and everything’s good in the GR economy (which is impossible). One side starts to fluctuate, and you have to compensate (and it’ll certainly ruffle up the industry some, but that’s normal!).

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