School District 102 has a $3 million tax increase referendum on the November ballot. Without the additional revenue, class sizes will be increased and numerous valuable programs cut. Excellent schools will be reduced to mediocrity. 

But I don’t write to extol the values of a high-quality education. I want to focus on home values. The proposal will raise total tax bills by 4 percent. That is $112 per $100,000 of property value. So the owner of a $500,000 home will pay an additional $560 per year. 

What does that cost over time? Say 10 years? It’s obvious that 10 times $560 is $5,600 in additional payments. But the effect on the value of the house is not so clear. 

Certainly the quality of local schools has a significant effect on house prices. Many families choose to move to District 102 in large part based on school quality. Their demand for housing supports our home values. 

If homes in a top-quality school district increase in value by 1 percent more per year than homes where schools are mediocre, the financial effect over the years is substantial. 

If the referendum passes, at that rate over 10 years, the $500,000 house’s value will rise by 10 percent more than if the referendum fails. 

Ten percent of $500,000 is $50,000. That is a lot more than $5,600. Vote yes for the referendum to preserve District 102’s excellent schools, to maintain the desirability of our communities and to enhance the value of your home investment.

David May