States With the Highest and Lowest Property Tax Rates

Trying to avoid high property taxes? Here are the states where you should consider moving — and those to avoid.

New Jersey homeowners pay a real estate property tax rate that’s 8.5 times higher than that paid by Hawaii homeowners.

That’s because New Jersey has the highest property tax rate in the country (2.8 percent of a home’s value), and Hawaii has the lowest rate (0.28 percent), according to a recent analysis by the nonprofit think tank Tax Foundation.

The analysis of property tax rates on owner-occupied property is based on data from the U.S. Census Bureau and the Tax Foundation.

The states with the highest property tax rates according to the foundation’s analysis are:

  • New Jersey: 2.38 percent of total home value
  • Illinois: 2.32 percent
  • New Hampshire: 2.15 percent
  • Connecticut: 1.98 percent
  • Wisconsin: 1.96 percent

The states with the lowest property tax rates are:

  • South Carolina: 0.57 percent of home value
  • Delaware: 0.55 percent
  • Louisiana: 0.51 percent
  • Alabama: 0.43 percent
  • Hawaii: 0.28 percent

To view a map with every state’s rank and percentage, click the Tax Foundation link above.

Before you relocate, though, keep in mind that property taxes are just one type of tax you will pay. Some states with high property taxes may have lower costs in other areas.

For example, while New Hampshire has the third-highest property tax rate in the country, it’s one of the few states in the country without a statewide sales tax and one of the few that do not have an income tax, except on interest and dividends. (See “4 Things You Must Know About How States Tax Retirement.”)

Additionally, the state you live in isn’t the only factor that affects your property tax rate. For example, according to real estate data website RealtyTrac‘s latest annual U.S. property tax report, owners of both very high-end and very low-end homes often have the highest property tax rates:

Nationwide, the average effective property tax rate for all single family homes in 2014 was 1.29 percent, but the average effective property tax rate was 1.68 percent for homes valued $50,000 or below and 1.40 percent on homes valued between $50,000 and $100,000. Meanwhile the average effective property tax rate was 1.56 percent on homes valued $1 million to $2 million and 1.77 percent for homes valued $2 million to $5 million.

To learn about ways to reduce your property tax liability, check out “Ask Stacy: What Can I Do About My High Property Taxes

How does your state measure up for its property tax rate? Share your thoughts with us below or on Facebook.

Stacy Johnson

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