A recent letter to the editor, published on Sept. 14 in ThisWeek Upper Arlington News, suggested that "Issue 43 would raise property values." This long-held and cherished view of real estate agents and school levy supporters is simply not true.
There are many variables to home value, and in our beloved Upper Arlington, the limited boundaries, proximity to the Ohio State University and other career opportunities and a relatively safe neighborhood are as important, if not more so.
Like most commodities, the cost of home purchases is driven primarily by supply and demand, the hope/belief in value appreciation and, of course, location. Add the sense of community, safety, efficient city government and the hope that property taxes are reasonable, and one understands what criteria are evaluated once a prospective buyer finds a home that they like.
Yes, the quality of the schools is a factor but not a deal-breaking factor either way.
Back to the Realtor mantra that high property taxes will raise property values. If you believe this, than by extension, you believe that taxation increases wealth and prosperity. So, let's triple down and tax everyone into being richer and more wealthy, right? At some point, the "chickens will come home to roost." High property taxes and sky-high asking prices in Upper Arlington will incentivize prospective homebuyers to look for alternatives.
I don't believe the school administrators have been good financial stewards, including building maintenance funded in past -- and not completed -- levies. It seems they have advanced salary and benefits at expense of their school buildings. I encourage a "no" vote on Issue 43.