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Thread: Does adding minisplit to garage increase property tax?

  1. #1
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    Does adding minisplit to garage increase property tax?

    I am thinking of adding a minisplit to my garage workshop. In general this would require a building permit. I was wondering if folks who have done this have found their property tax going up because this is now considered "conditioned space". If relevant, I am in California.
    -bernie

  2. #2
    Quote Originally Posted by Bernie May View Post
    I am thinking of adding a minisplit to my garage workshop. In general this would require a building permit. I was wondering if folks who have done this have found their property tax going up because this is now considered "conditioned space". If relevant, I am in California.
    -bernie
    I thought the requirement was "living space" and not "conditioned space". If it's living space adding an air conditioner would not change your assessment. Call your local assessor and ask.

    Mike
    Go into the world and do well. But more importantly, go into the world and do good.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Henderson View Post
    I thought the requirement was "living space" and not "conditioned space". If it's living space adding an air conditioner would not change your assessment. Call your local assessor and ask.

    Mike
    In CA, property tax is based upon purchase price.
    Additions are made for a small percentage increase each year, some legislated additional fees, and improvement cost.
    Not based upon living area or any other basis used in other states. Say thanks to Howard Jarvis.

  4. #4
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    I am in California and it has been my experience that every time I pulled a permit the property was "reassessed" and my taxes went up. I have pulled 2 permits in the last 4 years. One for my RV garage and one for a new roof.

  5. #5
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    TX / LA border.. Toledo Bend
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    How big is the garage ?

    Why mini split ?

    Wouldn't a "window" AC mounted in it's through wall sleeve do the job and be less than half the cost ?

    18k is $600, 24k is $750.

    220 v 15 amp I believe.

    Plus time/ matl to install.

    Marc
    Last edited by Marc Jeske; 07-15-2019 at 12:13 AM.
    I'm pretty new here, not as as experienced as most. Please don't hesitate to correct me

  6. #6
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    I'm sure it varies with locality. Our assessments are based on "market value" (and they seem to do a pretty good job of hitting it when you compare sale prices to assessment). I build a new RV size garage and refurbished my barn into a heated, air conditioned, insulated workshop with interior finishes and my assessment didn't change, probably because it doesn't have much, if any, market value in our area. Adding an AC unit here would make no difference at all. It could be completely different in your jurisdiction.

  7. #7
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    West Lafayette, IN
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    “Does adding minisplit to garage increase property tax?“

    Answer is definitely no if you don’t tell them about it. Lol

  8. #8
    I have permitted everything on my place since we have been in CA, the big house re-model and the shop build. BUT, there are just times when it is not worth going the permit route. Unless you are hanging the condensing unit off the front of the building, skip it.

  9. #9
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    When I replaced my windows in CA my house was reassessed and the taxes went up the cost of the windows, not the installation. Took 4 years for the town to catch up with me but they did and charged for missed years. My guess is it depends on the town so I'd call and ask.

  10. #10
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    As you know assessed value and market value are pretty much the same "initially", but they go their separate ways over time.

    In my neck of the woods taxes are based on assessed value which remains constant (except for every 5 years when properties are reassessed) while the tax rate increases over time. "Flyovers" are used to monitor external improvements, i.e. undocumented pools, barns, shed, or other recently added improvements. If you apply for a permit just to A/C your garage workshop then you are inviting the tax assessor to "reassess" your property, and that will only raise your taxes. So, some common sense must apply here. While an external compressor may show up in a flyover to indicate a new A/C system, a window A/C wouldn't, besides a Window A/C would not be considered a "substantial" improvement.
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  11. #11
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    CA Property tax law is different than any other state, totally different. Rate is based upon purchase price and adjusted up by cost of living or 2% per year, whichever is less.
    New construction increases rate but the entire property is NOT reassessed. Repairs don't change the value. The roof replacement mentioned above that changed the value is specifically prohibited. However, upgrading the roof would result in an increase for the improvement. If it would have cost $20k to replace it and you upgraded it to a $30K roof, the value will increase $10k. An AC in the garage would increase the value by the cost of the AC, not by any change in square footage of "improved" space.

    Systems used in other states such as an assessor deciding that your house would sell for a certain amount have nothing to do with tax rate in CA. You don't pay more because you are near the ocean or in a desirable area. Purchase price + 2% per year + improvements at cost with virtually NO adjustments or judgement by the assessor.

    CA has so many laws that kill us, but Property Tax basis is one of the rare exceptions.
    Last edited by Greg R Bradley; 07-16-2019 at 4:36 PM.

  12. #12
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    Check with your local assessor to get the current information.
    Ken

  13. #13
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    Davis, CA
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    thanks everyone who replied. I currently have a window AC and a separate 220V electric heater in the ceiling, plus a reasonably well insulated double garage. They do the job, but I would like a bit more AC with heat combo located more centrally in the garage. Plus I just want the pleasure of installing a minisplit myself. The installation would be right next to my subpanel for the garage.

  14. #14
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    NE Connecticut
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    Just to add to the conversation - where I live, living space has to have three of the following four things: finished walls, finished floors, heating/cooling, finished ceiling. If I added heating/cooling in my basement, I would add about 1,000 square feet of living space and my property would go up accordingly.


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