By Keith Regan, Contributing Writer
Northborough—Rising home values will help boost the average residential tax bills by $365 this year, one of the larger increases of the past decade as the town’s rate of commercial growth slows and taxpayers make the first payments on the Lincoln Street School project.
The state-mandated triennial revaluation of all property in town found that the average single family home is now valued at $398,960, a 2.9 percent increase, Town Administrator John Coderre told the Board of Selectmen Nov. 23. The annual tax bill on that home this year will be $6,850.
Before the new valuations were computed, the town expected the average tax bill to rise by $269, based on 3.5 percent operating budget growth, Coderre said. The additional bump is all related to the recovery of the housing market.
“The single family tax impacts are largely driven by market forces,” Coderre said.
Board Chair Jeff Amberson said the higher tax bills are the dark lining of the silver cloud of housing prices recovering to pre-recession levels.
“It really is about taking the good with the bad,” he said.
In a required annual ritual, selectmen unanimously voted to maintain a single tax rate for both commercial and residential properties.
“I believe having a single rate makes us attractive to the business community,” said Selectman Dawn Rand.
The town has maintained a single tax rate since 1979. Although still growing its tax base, Northborough is now several years removed from the peak of its commercial building boom, when Northborough Crossing and other large-scale developments came online, growth that helped keep tax bills growing slowly even as the town undertook numerous capital improvement projects, Coderre said.