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Thinking About Moving? These States Have the Lowest Property Taxes

Andrew DePietro

Depending on where you live, you can escape taxes like income tax and sales tax in the U.S. Property taxes, however, are not the same. And no matter where you settle down, you’ve got to cough up some amount come tax season.

That being said, you can minimize property taxes’ effect on your finances. Property tax rates vary significantly across the U.S., not just state-by-state, but county-by-county within states. In all calculations of property tax, the amount comes down to a percentage of your home’s assessed value.

Keep reading to see how your state’s property taxes measure up against the cheapest rates in the U.S.

Best States for Property Taxes

Honolulu, Hawaii.
Honolulu, Hawaii.

GOBankingRates conducted a study to determine which states had the lowest property taxes. The study was based on two principal factors: the average effective state property tax rate and the median amount paid annually in property taxes. States were given a score and then ranked in descending order, with the No. 1 state having the lowest property taxes.

The top seven states with the lowest property taxes are as follows:

  1. Alabama

  2. Louisiana

  3. Hawaii

  4. West Virginia

  5. South Carolina

  6. Arkansas

  7. Delaware

Check Out: The Most (and Least) Tax-Friendly Major Cities in America

Low property taxes are great when your focus is saving money. However, property taxes are also a crucial source of revenue for localities and state governments. They’re responsible for funding public schools and the quality of education received.

7 States With the Lowest Property Taxes

Read on to get more details about the states with the lowest property taxes.

7. Delaware

Average state property tax rate: 0.529% of assessed home value

Median real estate taxes paid: $1,274

Delaware is a prime state to get into now if you’re buying a home. With the fourth-lowest state property tax, homeowners won’t pay much. On a related note, in a recent study, Delaware ranked second in the U.S. for the state where home values are appreciating the most.

6. Arkansas

Average state property tax rate: 0.619% of assessed home value

Median real estate taxes paid: $721

Low tax rates and low home values make Arkansas a very affordable state in terms of property taxes. Across the state, county rates are all below 1 percent. The highest tops out at just 0.80 percent in Pulaski County, and the lowest rate is 0.39 percent in Stone County.

Understand: 6 Things Every Homeowner Should Know About Property Taxes

5. South Carolina

Average state property tax rate: 0.574% of assessed home value

Median real estate taxes paid: $821

South Carolina has the sixth-lowest average state property tax rate at 0.574 percent. Based on Zillow’s median home value, $159,100 as of June 2018, you’d pay about $913 annually in taxes. At these rates, you could by a second house in Hilton Head, S.C., ranked the best place in the state to own a vacation home.

4. West Virginia

Average state property tax rate: 0.589% of assessed home value

Median real estate taxes paid: $629

West Virginia is rapidly rising as a state for prospective homeowners. The average state tax rate is seventh lowest nationally, and cheap home prices keep real estate taxes low, at just $629 a year. It’s no surprise that West Virginia is the No. 2 best state for first-time homebuyers.

3. Hawaii

Average state property tax rate: 0.278% of assessed home value

Median real estate taxes paid: $1,459

Hawaii boasts the lowest average effective property tax rate in the whole study at a mere 0.278 percent. Based on a median home value of $615,700, however, you’ll have to pay about $1,712 in property taxes, which is close to what people pay in Florida and North Dakota, where tax rates exceed 1 percent.

2. Louisiana

Average state property tax rate: 0.479% of assessed home value

Median real estate taxes paid: $750

The U.S. South was heavily represented in the top 10 states, especially the Deep South. Louisiana has the third-lowest property tax rate in the U.S., plus affordable homes to keep annual taxes to a minimum. These factors and others help make it one of the best states to buy your first home.

1. Alabama

Average state property tax rate: 0.435% of assessed home value

Median real estate taxes paid: $550

Boasting the least amount paid in real estate taxes and the second-lowest average property tax rate, Alabama took first place fairly easily. Alabama’s median home value, $126,800, is the fifth lowest, which makes for very cheap property taxes, and contributes a more affordable cost of living than most states in the U.S.

Trending Now: From Alabama to Wyoming — The Cost of Living Across America

See the full rankings of all the states:

State Property Taxes

Rank

State

State Effective Property Tax Rate

Median Real Estate Taxes Paid

1

Alabama

0.435%

$550

2

Louisiana

0.479%

$750

3

Hawaii

0.278%

$1,459

4

West Virginia

0.589%

$629

5

South Carolina

0.574%

$821

6

Arkansas

0.619%

$721

7

Delaware

0.529%

$1,274

8

Wyoming

0.623%

$1,223

9

Mississippi

0.784%

$841

10

Colorado

0.624%

$1,516

11

Tennessee

0.748%

$1,088

12

New Mexico

0.724%

$1,232

13

Utah

0.688%

$1,508

14

Idaho

0.771%

$1,276

15

Kentucky

0.837%

$1,078

16

Oklahoma

0.868%

$1,076

17

Indiana

0.876%

$1,100

18

Arizona

0.845%

$1,367

19

North Carolina

0.855%

$1,345

20

Nevada

0.921%

$1,478

21

Montana

0.870%

$1,698

22

Georgia

0.957%

$1,413

23

Virginia

0.797%

$1,973

24

District of Columbia

0.572%

$2,811

25

Missouri

1.004%

$1,408

26

Florida

1.100%

$1,702

27

North Dakota

1.221%

$1,729

28

California

0.813%

$3,237

29

Minnesota

1.190%

$2,234

30

Oregon

1.076%

$2,637

31

Washington

1.083%

$2,860

32

South Dakota

1.356%

$1,943

33

Maine

1.271%

$2,329

34

Maryland

1.085%

$3,191

35

Iowa

1.470%

$1,986

36

Alaska

1.209%

$3,048

37

Kansas

1.587%

$1,890

38

Ohio

1.553%

$2,064

39

Pennsylvania

1.506%

$2,603

40

Massachusetts

1.181%

$4,132

41

Michigan

1.833%

$2,185

42

Nebraska

1.879%

$2,506

43

Texas

1.931%

$2,654

44

Rhode Island

1.610%

$3,929

45

Vermont

1.719%

$3,893

46

Wisconsin

1.969%

$3,257

47

New York

1.578%

$4,738

48

Illinois

2.253%

$4,058

49

Connecticut

1.910%

$5,443

50

New Hampshire

2.104%

$5,241

51

New Jersey

2.293%

$7,601

Click through to read more about the tax breaks every first-time homebuyer must know.

More on Taxes

Methodology: GOBankingRates determined the states with lower property taxes based on the following factors: (1) effective state property tax rate, sourced from SmartAsset; (2) real median real estate taxes paid in each state, sourced from the Census Bureau’s 2016 American Community Survey.

This article originally appeared on GOBankingRates.com: Thinking About Moving? These States Have the Lowest Property Taxes