Bozeman Montana Real Estate Agent : Michael Morgner

Featured Big Sky Sotheby's Real Estate AgentFeatured Big Sky Montana Real Estate Agent
Michael Morgner has been fishing the Gallatin River since he was 5-years-old; but it took him a few more years than that to make Montana his home. An accomplished agent who specializes in high-end properties, Michael and his family moved to the area in 2011 because of the quality of Bozeman’s schools and because they knew it would be “a wonderful place to live and raise a family.”

Michael got into real estate in 1998, in Santa Fe, New Mexico. It was something he enjoyed doing and the market was strong, he says. He is no stranger to Sotheby’s, having worked with Sotheby’s International Reality in Santa Fe on and off for several years.

When he and his family decided to relocate to Montana, it was a natural fit for Michael to transition to Sotheby’s International Realty in Big Sky. He continues to maintain his licensure in Santa Fe and work with clients in New Mexico on a limited basis.

Michel says he enjoys working with Sotheby’s in part due to “the respect that the brand commands.” “I do have a few specialty high-end clients. I thought this brand would serve them well,” he adds.

What type of buyer do you most enjoy working with?
“I love meeting people, so…they’re all different. We always end up having a good time.”

What does it mean to be a Certified Residential Specialist?
“It’s kind of like the PhD of real estate,” says Morgner, who explains that the designation has to do with production and continuing education. This prestigious credential is only held by 3 percent of realtors in the nation.

Does working in several regions enhance what you do in any way?
“Absolutely,” says Michael. “There are a lot of similarities.” Michael adds that continuing to maintain his New Mexico licensure and practice have allowed him to provide unique referrals and connections to clients in both areas.

What excites you most about working in the Bozeman/Big Sky area?
“This region in general is just seeing a lot of progress,” says Michael, who sees more people moving to the area, booming construction, and the increase in airport traffic as signs that the Gallatin Valley will continue to grow and thrive. “And the market in general is very strong.”

What’s unique about Sotheby’s International Realty Big Sky?
“It offers a great team environment: working together to sell a property. It’s a strong support group, not a competitive one,” Michael says.

Michael works with buyers in both Bozeman and Big Sky; he lives in Bozeman with his wife and six children.

Click to view Michael’s current real estate listings and contact information.

Thinking about listing your property this summer?

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The Collection Volume 7

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6 Questions and Answers To Help You Understand The Big Sky Resort Tax

Big Sky Resort TaxWhat is the Big Sky resort tax?
Resort tax is essentially a local sales tax collected by businesses and organizations that sell luxury items or provide goods and services within the Big Sky Resort Area. The Big Sky resort tax is three percent of the retail value of whatever is sold.

Quote: Laura Sacchi, Broker, Big Sky Sotheby’s International Realty “The Resort Tax in Big Sky is extremely effective, as every dollar collected in Big Sky stays in Big Sky and is allocated by an elected, uncompensated board, whose members live in the community. Local residents and tourists alike benefit from the tax revenue allocated to our emergency service providers, parks and trails, early education and childcare, free concerts and so much more.”

Why do we need a resort tax?
The Big Sky resort tax was adopted in 1992 in response to a rapidly growing tourist industry that was beginning to put a strain on local infrastructure and services. Most states rely on sales tax to pay for public services such as emergency response and public transportation. Montana is one of only five states in the nation to have zero sales tax; instead, we rely on income taxes and license fees as well as “selective sales tax” on things like tobacco, gasoline and alcohol to keep our governments and city services running. In Big Sky, resort tax has been used to subsidize the Big Sky Fire Department, the Big Sky Water and Sewer District, Big Sky Search and Rescue, the Big Sky Post Office and many more organizations that provide essential services, as well as non-profit organizations that improve the quality of life of our community. Given that Big Sky is not an incorporated municipality and has no taxing authority, this funding is critical.

Who has to pay the resort tax?
According to the Big Sky Resort Tax website, “businesses and short-term vacation rental owners located within the boundaries of the Big Sky Resort Area District are required, by law, to collect the three percent resort tax on all ‘luxury items and services’ sold, with the exception of specific exempted items.” Among other things, this includes hotels and lodging, bars and restaurants, ski resorts, recreational equipment rentals, outfitting services, sporting goods, jewelry and gifts, and arts and entertainment. Resort tax also applies to fundraiser tickets, fair vendors, and any luxury goods shipped out-of-state by Big Sky businesses.

Goods and services exempt from the resort tax include groceries, medical supplies, gasoline, vehicles, non-luxury labor and services, real-estate sales, and services provided by non-profit religious organizations.

How is the tax collected?
Businesses within the Big Sky Resort Area who offer luxury goods and services are required to register with the district and submit collected tax on a monthly basis. (Some eligible businesses have the option to submit their taxes on a quarterly basis.) Those collecting the tax are permitted to withhold five percent of the amount collected to offset the cost of administration.

Where does the money go?
Every year, the Big Sky Resort Tax Board of Directors allocates collected funds to services and projects such as public transportation, emergency services, post offices, tourism development, snow plowing and other “services that provide for the public health, safety and welfare within the Big Sky Resort Area District.” Most recently, resort tax funds were granted to the Arts Council of Big Sky, Blue Water Task Force, Big Sky Chamber of Commerce, the Jack Creek Preserve, Morningstar Learning Center, Big Sky Public Library and a variety of other local organizations.

Can my business apply to receive resort tax monies?
If your business or organization provides goods or services that contribute to the public’s general health and welfare, then, yes, you may apply to receive resort tax monies. Applications are reviewed on an annual basis; the deadline for the 2015-2016 review is April 6, 2015.

For a complete list of beneficiaries or for more information, go to: www.resorttax.org