If you are considering buying a home and wondering how much of a difference there is between the highest and lowest property taxes in the country, here’s the per capita* low-down. Alabama has the lowest property tax in the USA, but if you buy a home in New Jersey, which has the highest property tax, you will be paying $2,165 smackeroos more per year than Alabama. Not exactly a pittance…

Four of the five states with the highest property tax rates are in the northeast:

  1. New Jersey: $2,642.
  2. Connecticut: $2,393.
  3. New Hampshire: $2,320.
  4. Wyoming: $2,175.
  5. New York: $2,124.

The five lowest property taxes are all south of the Mason-Dixon line:

  1. Alabama: $477.
  2. Arkansas: $527.
  3. New Mexico: $539.
  4. Oklahoma: $562.
  5. Kentucky: $620.

I personally can’t imagine buying property myself. A renter by temperament – If the roof leaks, the refrigerator breaks down, the ceiling caves in, or snow piles high on the front walk – boom – call the landlord and poof – the problem is his to deal with. Yet apparently enough of the own-your-own-home American dream thing still lurks in my DNA to keep me breezing through house listings and checking out things like homeowner taxes.

Most of the states with the highest property taxes are close to the Atlantic with its chilly winds and dramatic Nor’easter storms. People move faster in the northeast, maybe both to keep warm and hustle up that extra dough to pay for those higher taxes.

In the states distinguished by the lowest property taxes, the climate is warmer, the pace of life slower. No need to rush, to break your neck making money when all that’s needed is a little three figure sum to keep you and yours under the comfy shade of your very own roof.

*Calculated by dividing property taxes collected in each state by population.

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