The Swartz Report: What does Elton John have to do with Property Tax Valuations?

Elton John and Property Tax ValuationsFor the past several years, around this time, I’ve been writing about road trips to take my kids back to college. Many memorable excursions indeed, but I thought my travels to Syracuse may be over and my college campus visits would be limited to my alma mater. ???? Well, there is always the exception as the family congregated in Syracuse (with our other friends) to see Elton John’s Farewell Tour.

As my son professed after the concert, he has never heard the crowd at “the dome” so loud for a football or basketball game as compared to the concert goers. Elton did not disappoint, especially the last 45 minutes! At 75, he can still command an audience. While his theatrics have calmed down over the years, the video board and close ups of his piano playing were all I needed for an entertaining evening. If you have a chance, I would recommend making the effort to see the Farewell Tour – Good Bye Yellow Brick Road before he closes in Los Angeles.

So, what does this have to do with property tax valuations for railcars, equipment and commercial industrial buildings?

Elton John and Property Tax ValuationsAbsolutely nothing… unless we look at the importance of experience, knowledge and command of a situation.

While not a seasoned entertainer of 50 years, I will be completing my 36th year of appealing property tax valuations. Over that amount of time, you meet people of all personalities; see all types of properties; attend hearings ranging from the local, one-on-one meetings to cases before the State Supreme Court.  Additionally, we’ve endured challenging economic times – the Dotcom bust of the early 2000s, the market collapse of 2008-09 and more recently, the impact of the Coronavirus pandemic.

These experiences, while challenging at that particular moment, help define who I am as an individual and who we are as a company. I would like to believe these situations have made our company stronger and better able to serve our clients today and more importantly, into the future.

Catering to our Audience

Elton John and Property Tax ValuationsLike Elton John, we should be able to cater to our audience, perform to (and exceed) expectations and know we have given our best efforts to get maximum results. After all, patrons of a concert are really clients of the performer.

Thank you, Sir Elton John, for your excellence of music. And thank you to our audience for allowing us to provide our excellence in the property tax world. By the way, any thoughts on the valuation of a yellow, brick road? Replacement cost, less depreciation… any functional or economic obsolescence???

As always, you may reach me with your thoughts or questions – or .

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