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We’re number one!

Wednesday, Apr 27, 2016 - Posted by Rich Miller

* Oy

Illinois has the highest median property tax rate in the nation, with various agencies and entities taking a combined 2.67 percent bite, according to a CoreLogic analysis of real estate property taxes nationwide.

Nationally, the median property tax rate is 1.31 percent, said the Irvine, Calif.-based data provider to financial services and real estate companies. That means that a home valued at $200,000 will, on average, pay annual total property taxes of $2,620.

In Illinois, that homeowner would pay $5,340. […]

After Illinois, the states with the highest median property tax rates are: New York, 2.53 percent; New Hampshire, 2.4 percent; and New Jersey, 2.37 percent. […]

Recent studies by both WalletHub, a personal finance website, and the nonprofit Tax Foundation, both based in Washington, D.C., found that Illinois had the second-highest property taxes in the nation, after New Jersey.

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  1. - Norseman - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 3:38 pm:

    The Raunerbites start in 1 .. 2.. 3 …

  2. - illinois manufacturer - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 3:44 pm:

    I will stop them. It makes the case for the progressive tax so education is less reliant on the ptax. BTW my rate is higher than that.

  3. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 3:44 pm:

    I pay $2600 for my $110,000 house. Ughh Sure could use that missed service increase right about now.

  4. - Soccermom - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 3:45 pm:

    Yeah — our property taxes are way too high because our income tax rates are low and flat. We need a smarter income tax system, appropriate levels of State funding for schools, and businesses that actually pay their fair share. That will bring property taxes down and help the people who are being priced out of their houses because their home values have risen and their wages have not.

  5. - 47th Ward - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 3:47 pm:

    What is the biggest charge on property tax bills? What does the constitution say about the state’s role in funding education?

  6. - BIG R. Ph. - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 3:51 pm:

    Perhaps it is because there are 6,963 units of local government in Illinois. We are #1 in that also. Perhaps cause & effect?

  7. - You gotta be proud - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 3:52 pm:

    To the Governor, Senate President, Speaker, County Board Chairmen, School Boards, Township Supervisors, etc. (you all know who you are:

    Don’t you feel proud now? Together you made Illinois #1. You should be PROUD of yourself. Take a good look at yourself in a mirror. Happy now??

  8. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 3:53 pm:

    It’s not as simple as saying our income tax is too low. Plenty of states have lower or no income tax and they don’t show up on this list of high property taxes.

  9. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 3:55 pm:


    Unfortunately my property value and others in my general area have steadily declined due to foreclosures and abandonment. People are struggling! Whether it be increased property taxes, higher COLA, missed raises, etc. Times are hard, let’s keep inflating property taxes and healthcare costs. That will surely help with the foreclosure issue. Get ready for another massive collapse. The cycle is real!

  10. - muon - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 3:57 pm:

    Most states blend their revenues to match the economy. Illinois has a largely antiquated revenue system that is tied to its old manufacturing base. Expansion of the sales tax on services in lieu of some property tax would put us more in line with the current economy and most other states.

  11. - Mr How Ironic - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 3:57 pm:

    I have to concur. In Springfield I paid over $8,000 in property tax. Moved to CA, paid 2x what my house cost in IL, but my property tax dropped over $3000.

    Go figure.

  12. - nobody - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 3:57 pm:

    According to the Federation of Tax Administrators, total taxes in Illinois as a percentage of income ranks Illinois in the bottom 10 prior to the income tax increase in 2011 and 27th in total tax as a percentage of income in 2012 after the temporary income tax. So it seems to me it is how we tax that impacts our local property taxes.

  13. - Ok - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 3:57 pm:

    Again - middle class and lower class (through rent) are bearing the burden of our flat tax system.

  14. - Dance Band on the Titanic - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 3:57 pm:

    Lowest state share of K-12 education funding = highest property tax rate.

  15. - NoGifts - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 4:05 pm:

    It’s because our income rates are very low and therefore the state doesn’t participate in funding schools (the largest chunk) so we have to collect it locally. It comes out of either your left pocket or your right pocket.

  16. - Ok - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 4:07 pm:

    ” Plenty of states have lower or no income tax ”

    Those states have other taxation and revenue streams. Such as Gross Receipts Taxes, or, more profitably for Texas and Alaska, natural resource severance taxes.

    When half your tax revenue comes from oil and gas extraction, you can have low income taxes.

    Part of the reason why we can’t just “be like Texas.” You got free money there squirting up from the ground.

  17. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 4:10 pm:

    Illinois the tax and spend state. Watch the state lose more tax payers leaving the state, when the state tries to balance the budget with more taxes on the middle class! We are also number one now in population leaving a state!

  18. - Not It - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 4:10 pm:

    Not according to Karen Lewis, and since she pays property taxes too, and despite her six figure government-funded salary, they should be raised.

  19. - Ducky LaMoore - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 4:14 pm:

    ===Illinois the tax and spend state. Watch the state lose more tax payers leaving the state, when the state tries to balance the budget with more taxes on the middle class! We are also number one now in population leaving a state!===

    So then you love the Lou Lang plan, right?

  20. - Michelle Flaherty - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 4:21 pm:

    You gotta be proud,
    Yeah, the state should get rid of that ridiculous state property tax.

  21. - Joshua Steele - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 4:23 pm:

    Property taxes in Illinois are the prime result of the state failing to properly fund education.

  22. - Sir Reel - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 4:24 pm:

    One reason is the number of local units of government with the authority to impose property taxes. In most states there’s no special districts like park districts, library districts, mosquito districts, etc., etc.

    Many on this blog say consolidating and eliminating these special districts wouldn’t save money, but the numbers speak for themselves. They can’t be completely explained by the lack of State funding for school districts.

  23. - Earnest - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 4:28 pm:

    The state needs more revenue. We can’t cut our way out of the pension debt we built up over the years. I don’t interpret a things like this as “Illinois already taxes too much” as I do that Illinois needs to take a non-piecemeal approach to overall taxation, just as it does to the spending.

    It’s also a good conversation starter for the state funding formula. Property tax-funded schools are not conducive to equal opportunities for kids. The Ottawa Times has some numbers in an article for their local area:

  24. - illlinifan - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 4:30 pm:

    All in unison… is time for serious tax reform and move away from our flat tax. I have family in western states. One has a home valued at over a million dollars and their property taxes are just under $3000 a year. They nearly collapse when they hear what I pay in Illinois. And I don’t even have the view that they have.

  25. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 4:34 pm:

    Property taxes in Illinois are high because of low state taxation (which is regressive in nature so high property tax combined with flat tax hurts low/middle class the hardest) But what else is new? Who would ever think that those with highest incomes would contribute most? But additionally, this property tax/local control is what I remember folks yelling about with respect to their neighborhood schools……..local control. Either state funding/state domination or more local monies/local control

  26. - Hamlet's Ghost - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 5:02 pm:

    The heavy lift stays the same:

    (a) Take ownership of the need for revenue; or

    (b) Take ownership of the specific cuts needed to balance the budget without that revenue.

  27. - Enviro - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 5:08 pm:

    Illinois has the fourth most regressive taxes in America.

  28. - Formerly Known As... - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 5:19 pm:

    Someone at the Tribune missed the lede. That same new Wallethub study also finds Illinois has the highest effective tax rate of any state.

  29. - foster brooks - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 6:41 pm:

    I remember not long ago most school referendum’s in the burbs passed with relative ease.

  30. - Tone - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 6:57 pm:

    Teacher pension obligations must be put back to the school districts that created them. And allow municipal bankruptcy. That will help significantly.

  31. - PublicServant - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 7:03 pm:

    You’re a broken record Tone. Pay your bills.

  32. - Last Bull Moose - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 7:13 pm:

    To be slightly contrarian, property taxes are one of the few taxes one can manage. Downsize and move to lower tax areas and thereby cut your taxes.

  33. - mokenavince - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 7:17 pm:

    Finally we lead the country in something. We also lead in most government’s. Only one way to go now
    Lets try to be at least 5th in the nation.

  34. - Federalist - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 7:32 pm:

    The exchange for lower property taxes in exchange for higher income taxes, at least for some if the graduated tax is implemented, is a Potemkin Village illusion- unless there is a very direct and honest way that there is direct exchange.

    We had the first income tax in order to help education and some said to reduce the reliance on property taxes.

  35. - kayaker - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 7:34 pm:

    I recently moved back to Illinois I would never buy in this state again because of the taxes

  36. - cannon649 - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 9:09 pm:

    What all seem miss in this discussion is the hugh sales taxes and other fees that most other states do have. If you are a business it is worst.

    Would anyone want to wait for this group of elected officials fix the taxes rate and adjust the income taxes rates? Or for a landlord to lower the rent because taxes are lower?

    By the way who has the largest real estate appeal firm in Cook County (state)? Try MM?

  37. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 10:43 pm:

    But if you listen to the Democrats, the only tax that matters is the income tax. Doesn’t matter that IL pays the highest property taxes so long as the income tax is back to at least 5%.

  38. - 'Goose - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 11:09 pm:

    What about mean (not median)? I bet New York and New Jersey are higher if you look at the mean. My ex grew up on Long Island and her parents’ property taxes were twice as much as my parents’ for a house that was only worth 50 percent more, and my parents’ house is in New Trier Township. Downstate Illinois rates are probably higher than most non urban areas in the country, but inner-ring suburban Chicagoans in good school districts SHOULD NOT be complaining

  39. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Apr 27, 16 @ 11:25 pm:

    The statewide percentage is so low only because Cook County homes are assessed so low.

  40. - Holdingontomywallet - Thursday, Apr 28, 16 @ 8:26 am:

    I have a problem when the government makes more money off my property than I do.

  41. - Stones - Thursday, Apr 28, 16 @ 8:40 am:

    I didn’t mind paying property tax when I had kids in school, now that they have graduated we are moving south. Our property tax in Florida for a comparable value home is approximately 40% of Illinois.

  42. - JS Mill - Thursday, Apr 28, 16 @ 9:05 am:

    =I didn’t mind paying property tax when I had kids in school, now that they have graduated we are moving south. Our property tax in Florida for a comparable value home is approximately 40% of Illinois. =

    Your probability of being run down by a 90 year old woman driving a 78 Lincoln while you are waiting in line for the “early bird special” at Old Country Buffet just went up 90% though.

  43. - Stones - Thursday, Apr 28, 16 @ 9:08 am:

    JS Mill, you are a funny guy! Enjoy your enormous property taxes.

  44. - VanillaMan - Thursday, Apr 28, 16 @ 9:11 am:

    A wise old college professor repeatedly told us that “Politics is all about who pays!”

    Professor Paul Green, of course, is right.

    The tax issues we are having is about HOW we are to pay for our government. It isn’t about amount, is it? It is about how the tax is justified.

    Property taxes are more stable as a dependable source for taxes. Economies boom and bust, forcing governments to seek reliable and stable tax sources. It isn’t just schools dependent upon property taxes, it is many other governments as well.

    Some states have high property taxes with lower income, no income taxes, or low sales taxes. But sales taxes and income taxes are negatively impacted during recessions when more government aide is needed by struggling families. Thinking we can just raise income and sales taxes while lowering property taxes, is setting governments up for failure when the next economic downturn occurs.

    Anti-government groups want citizens to focus upon each tax individually without explaining how all taxes are interdependent upon one another. This creates a false argument for them to spread around before an election.

    Instead of letting them mislead us, focus upon a better understanding of how this all works.

    HOW do you want to pay your taxes? Based upon your consumption, your income, or your real estate holdings? Who pays these different taxes? Do you want a sustainable government or a poor government? Needy citizens don’t pay property or income taxes, yet they need more government on a daily basis.

    We need tax reform about as often as we need new understandings of our dynamic economy. Don’t let anti-government politics lead you into worse government. It is a death spiral for all citizens.

  45. - VanillaMan - Thursday, Apr 28, 16 @ 9:23 am:

    One final thing-Boomers are retired or are retiring. They are at a point in their lives when they seek tax shelters. They own real estate at a much higher rate than other generations. So property taxes are not their friend.

    Yet this generation is massive and taxing our governments for the next two decades. Our pension systems are struggling, our schools are struggling after generations of expansion to meet their needs, our health care systems are struggling to meet Boomer demands.

    It would be foolish to shortchange younger generations supporting these retirees by raising sales and income taxes to give them property tax relief.

    They need to pay their fair share too. They are a costly drag without doing so.

    Just be aware

  46. - atsuishin - Thursday, Apr 28, 16 @ 9:38 am:

    …and the drum beat to raise taxes continues I see; lots of righteous theoretic on changing the constitution to lift all restrictions on future income tax hikes, but of course no corresponding amendment to reduce property taxes and/or limit the number of local governments.

  47. - Tone - Thursday, Apr 28, 16 @ 4:27 pm:

    4th highest tax burden in the nation. When do become #1 in that category? Mr. Madigan?

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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