The Complete Guide to Understanding Dane County Property Taxes
Tax season is here again. We try our best to keep taxes out of dinnertime conversation but it’s still an important subject for any responsible adult.
The 2023 yearly median for taxes in Dane County is $4,149.00. This is roughly equal to 1.8% of the median home value.
Your specific property tax is determined by a complicated formula:
Property taxes = (Mill rate) x (assessed property value)
What the heck is a mill rate?
One mill is 0.1 cents. Also known as one-thousandth of a dollar.
A mill rate of 1 means you pay $1 in taxes for every 1,000 of your property value.
Different parts of town (and different neighborhoods within that part of town) have different mill rates. For example, Fitchburg Group A has a mill rate of 0.017801172 while Fitchburg Group C has a mill rate of 0.020567331. If the property tax rate is important to your purchase decisions you can check this chart to determine where your neighborhood falls.
Which areas of Dane county pay the least property taxes?
According to the Dane County treasurer, the areas with the smallest mill rates for the 2022 tax year are:
- The Town of Westport with a mill rate of 0.007011343 in some neighborhoods.
- The Town of Mazomanie with a mill rate of 0.01139492 in some neighborhoods.
- The Town of Pleasant Springs with a mill rate of 0.011879065 in some neighborhoods.
- The Town of Albion with a Mill rate of 0.012640329 in some neighborhoods.
- The Town of Deerfield with a mill rate of 0.012224962 in some neighborhoods.
Which areas of Dane County pay the most in property taxes?
According to the Dane County treasurer, the areas with the highest mill rates for the 2022 tax year are:
- The Village of Brooklyn with a mill rate of 0.025038079.
- The Village of Black Earth with a mill rate of 0.025802006 in some neighborhoods.
- The Town of Montrose with a mill rate of 0.022503931 in some neighborhoods.
- The city of Sun Prarie with a mill rate of 0.022115159 in some neighborhoods
- The Town of Black Earth with a mill rate of 0.021264622 in some neighborhoods
How do Dane County Taxes Compare to the rest of Wisconsin?
Dane county residents pay higher taxes than any other county in the state. But this trend isn’t uncommon for capital cities.
How do Dane County Taxes Compare to the rest of the USA?
Wisconsin property taxes trend high, even compared to the rest of the country:
- New Jersey scored the highest property tax rate in the country at 1.89%
- Wisconsin scored the #5 spot at 1.76%
- Louisiana scored the lowest rate at 0.18%
How do I pay my property taxes?
If you have a mortgage, your mortgage broker has rolled your property taxes into your monthly premium payment. It’s all paid out of an escrow account alongside your home insurance. You shouldn’t owe anything extra during the tax season unless you’re behind on your mortgage payments.
If you own your house outright with no mortgage, it’s a different story. Contact your local treasury office and have them send your tax invoice directly to you. In Dane County, what you owe could be several thousand dollars. But not to worry, most treasury offices will allow you to make payments on the invoice.
What happens if I don’t pay my property taxes?
Nothing good. If you don’t pay your taxes a property tax lien can be put on your home. Essentially, this means that the government takes your house title. Fees and interest rates are added on, making it difficult to reclaim your title. Tax liens can’t be avoided by selling the property or filing for bankruptcy.
What to do if you feel like your home was unfairly assessed:
The assessed value of your home plays a big role in your tax formula. The Dane County Tax Assessor handles determining the fair market value of your property.
- 25% of homes in America are unfairly overassessed.
- 25% of homes pay to overpay in taxes by an average of$1,346$
If you suspect your house is been unfairly assessed, or that you’ve overpaid on your taxes you can fill out a short appeal form. You’ll have to include your own proposed appraisal and a description of why you believe your estimate is more accurate than the assessors.
If your appeal is denied, you can re-appeal. If the appeal is denied a second time you have the option of bringing your appeal to Dane County Courts.