Prior to Proposition 13, the assessor appraised the property, then was allowed to assess the property up to 25%. In 1978, the average percentage in the state was 22%. The county rate at the time was $13.50 per $1,000 of assesed value.
If a home under the "old" system was appraised at $100,000, the assessor would assess the property at 22% for a total of $22,000, multiplied by the rate of $13.50 per $1,000 of assessed value for a total of $2,970 in taxes.
Under our present system of 1 1/4% of sale value, the same $100,000 home would be taxed at $1,250. If you paid $200,000 for your home, just double the figures, and as a post-Proposition 13 buyer you are still a lot better off.
Keep in mind that since Proposition 13 was enacted, we have had substantial inflation. There is no doubt that the rate of $13.50 used in 1978 to compute your taxes would have been increased considerably, and the home that was appraised in 1978 for $100,000 would probably be appraised at $200,000 today. Even though you purchased your home today, you are still better off with the present system.
As for renters, if we didn't have Proposition 13, you wouldn't have rent control and neither the middle-class nor the poor renters and property owners could afford to live in Southern California.
SAMUEL S. SHERWIN