Solano Real Estate Scene: Porter is no pollster

Wow, No. 1: I better stick to my policy and keep my opinions to myself when it comes to politics from now on because I did get some pushback on my opposition to Proposition 10 (rent control). Wow, No. 2: I thought Proposition 5 was a no-brainer and that it would pass easily but I didn’t do my homework and really understand the opposition. I was blinded by the stories I have seen over the years, like my 70-year-old widow who sold her large, high-maintenance home in north Vacaville that she and her late husband owned for 40 years and moved to a small, low-maintenance, one-story home in her same beloved neighborhood near her church and was able to maintain her low property taxes. The part I missed was that Proposition 5 was viewed by the opposition as a tax break for elderly wealthy homeowners. This widow was not wealthy. She sold her big house for $500,000 and paid off her $100,000 mortgage and paid $400,000 for her cute little house and took out a mortgage for $100,000 on the new house and pocketed $100,000 that went into her bank account for cash reserves. This $100,000 is all she has in reserves and her monthly income is a whopping $3,000 per month. She is not even close to wealthy, but thankfully Solano County allowed her to keep her property taxes at $200 per month based on her departing residence assessed value. Proposition 5 would have allowed her to move to any county in California if it had passed. What is interesting about the opposition to Proposition 5 is that they are right: This widow is in better shape financially than the majority of widows her age because her and her husband built $400,000 in equity over their 50-year marriage. The moral of the story is because she and her husband bought a house 40 years ago and paid it down to $100,000 in debt, this widow has options today. If they had rented the past 40 years, she may have had no options.