Does a Sunroom Addition Raise My Property Taxes?

by Samantha Kemp, Demand Media
    A sunroom may add comfort and value to your home.

    A sunroom may add comfort and value to your home.

    A sunroom addition can create a comfortable, enclosed living space that allows you to enjoy the outdoors without leaving the comfort of your home. A sunroom often features large exterior windows and is typically attached to the home's HVAC system, making it a form of new construction. Although a sunroom can provide you with many benefits, though, it can also increase your tax liability.

    Increased Value

    The amount of value a sunroom addition adds to your house depends on the house and the sunroom, and possibly on when you put it in. According to a 2010 report in "U.S. News & World Report," the average homeowner recoups about 51 percent of the cost of a sunroom addition when he sells the property. On the other hand, the National Association of Remodelers' 2008 survey concluded that a sunroom retains 92 percent of its value. A higher home value is associated with a higher amount of property taxes. However, it is possible to convert an existing room into a sunroom without adding significantly (or at all) to the property tax value.

    New Construction

    When you add new construction to a space, you have to apply for building permits. These permits are sent to the tax assessor's office. When the job is completed, this may trigger a new assessment. However, many new construction projects are not immediately assessed, and you will not pay additional property taxes due to an increase in your sunroom's value until the county assessor estimates an increase in value and records it.

    Location

    Sunrooms may add more value to a property in certain areas of the country. More buyers in the Northeast and Midwest prefer homes with sunrooms than buyers in the South and West. The National Association of Realtors indicates that the addition of a sunroom in neighborhoods that do not typically have sunrooms can set a property apart when it's on the market.

    Energy Efficiency

    Sunrooms that are built with energy-efficient windows can increase the value of the space. Energy-efficient double-glazed glass with high UV protection can help cut heating and cooling costs. A more efficient home will sell for more than a similar home with poor efficiency.

    Computation of Property Taxes

    Property taxes are determined by several factors, including the property's assessment. Adding a sunroom to your property can increase the value and the perceived assessment of the property. Each county will have a particular rate at which it taxes residential properties. The tax rate incorporates a percentage of the value of the property's assessment. For example, if the assessment rate is 30 percent and the house is worth $100,000, the assessment is $30,000, and the county would apply property taxes to this figure. If the sunroom adds $20,000 to the value of the property, 30 percent of the new value would be $36,000, so you would be taxed on an additional $6,000 in this example. Exemptions may be taken out of your tax bill, if applicable. Exemptions may apply if you are a veteran, disabled or a particular type of volunteer.

    About the Author

    Samantha Kemp is a lawyer for a general practice firm. She has been writing professionally since 2009. Her articles focus on legal issues, personal finance, business and education. Kemp acquired her JD from the University of Arkansas School of Law. She also has degrees in economics and business and teaching.

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