Rhode Island: High Property Taxes By Any Metric

November 23, 2009

The Rhode Island Future blog claims that the Tax Foundation doesn’t present property taxes as a percent of median home value. They claim that by that metric, property taxes in Rhode Island’s counties “are higher than the median…but not by much.”

First, back in September we put out a nifty map of property taxes as a percent of median home value, and we issued a new report last month on new data on that topic that had just come out. Our estimate of Rhode Islanders paying 1.24% of home value in property taxes is about what the bloggers came up with, but it’s not around the median. It’s actually the 16th highest in the U.S. and higher than neighboring Massachusetts. With the median at 0.96% of home value, that means Rhode Island is 29% higher than the median.

Anchor Rising dives even deeper into a rebuttal by looking at county-level data, finding that Rhode Island counties have higher property taxes as a percent of median home value than many neighboring counties in Massachusetts and Connecticut, and the vast majority higher than the U.S. median.

His conclusion is correct:

As the above figures illustrate, even though Rhode Islanders have higher income than the median for the country, we pay an even larger percentage of that income in property taxes, and even though our counties’ median incomes are dispersed among those of abutting counties, they cluster at the top for percentage of income absorbed in property taxes.

More on Rhode Island here.



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