The Tax Foundation of Washington, DC, which invented the “Tax Freedom” calculation of the day you earned enough to pay your taxes each year, has released a list of the counties with the highest median property taxes in the nation (based on 2005-2007 figures). Though Westchester County was the highest-median-tax jurisdiction ($7,908), New York only has five entries in the top 20 (Nassau, Rockland, Putnam, and Suffolk also placed), coming in second to beautiful New Jersey, which has 13. New York (Manhattan) placed a distant 74th, Richmond (Staten Island) 201st, Queens 212th, Kings (Brooklyn) 220th, and the Bronx 310th.
These figures don’t necessarliy correspond to high rates, as property values run high around our way: for example, just ahead of Manhattan ($3,595) is Montgomery County, Pennsylvania ($3,614), whose 1.3 percent tax rate gives it pride of place even though its median home value is less than 40 percent of Manhattan’s. But New York’s Orleans County leads the nation in media property tax rate with a whopping 3 percent.
Local property owners may compare their situation to that of homeowners in the list’s bottom 20 counties, almost entirely in Louisiana, where low home values and tax rates of 0.1-0.4 percent combine to suggest great New Depression retirement options.