Real estate taxes vary from city to city, and in a report from LendingTree, LendingTree Chief Economist Tendayi Kapfidze looks at the average amount of real estate taxes, mortgage interest, and mortgage insurance premiums that were paid by homeowners in a given metro, ranking the 50 largest metros to show where people paid the lowest taxes on their homes.
“The purpose of our study is not only to show where real estate taxes are the lowest, but also to help familiarize the average person with a few key elements present in the 2017 Trump tax bill,” said Kapfidze. “That way, homeowners will not only have a better understanding of what their tax burden is like, compared to other people from around the country, but they will also have a better idea of the kinds of steps they need to take to maximize their tax refund.”
According to the study, people in rural states pay less in real estate taxes on average than those in more urban areas. LendingTree states that Birmingham, Alabama; Louisville, Kentucky; and Salt Lake City pay an average of $2,600 on real estate taxes, which is the lowest out of the nation’s 50 largest metros. Urban areas, such as New York, San Jose, California, and San Francisco paid an average of $9,400 in real estate taxes, double the average amount of the 50 largest metroes.
Kapfidze notes the importance of homeowners to itemize in order to get a deduction based on things like their real estate taxes, or the amount of money they pay in mortgage interest.
“While higher refunds issued under the Trump tax bill can help people who are struggling to pay for real estate taxes or mortgage interest costs, there are better ways to manage these kinds of costs,” Kapfidze said. “Ultimately, people who feel as though they are chronically overburdened by high real estate taxes or mortgage interest fees are better off looking at alternative ways of ease this burden, as opposed to solely relying on their federal tax refund. For example, moving to a less expensive area like Birmingham, Alabama, can help alleviate costs associated with owning a home.”