Property tax roundup: West Garfield Park, Tri-Taylor have highest tax bills on Chicago's West Side
In 2007, when Atari Brown purchased 4422 W. Washington Blvd. in West Garfield Park, it set him back $400,000, according to Blockshopper.
With inflation, that same house in the same condition it was 12 years ago would have cost Brown $484,965 if purchased today.
However, the multi-family unit, like Brown, has fallen on hard times.
Before it sold at auction on February 22 for $61,950, the Zillow description for the listing stressed that it needed a "complete reno."
From the time Brown purchased the building to when he was forced to sell it as part of foreclosure proceedings last year, his property taxes jumped 38.90 percent. In that time, he was billed $45,384 for taxes by Cook County, making the effective tax rate on the property 73.26 percent.
Homeowners in West Garfield Park, Tri-Taylor and Lawndale saw the highest effective tax rates on the West Side during the second part of 2018, according to an analysis by Local Government Services (LGIS), which publishes the Chicago City Wire.
The effective property tax rate, or the percentage of your home’s value that you pay in property taxes each year, averages 2.31 percent in Illinois, three times the 0.87 percent tax rate in neighboring Indiana, according to WalletHub.com.
Across the nation, the average tax rate is 1.3 percent.
Of the 23 West Side communities surveyed by LGIS, two have effective property tax rates higher than the state average. West Garfield Park topped the list with a 3.70 percent tax rate and Tri-Taylor was second at 2.60 percent. Lawndale was just below the state's average at 2.30 percent.
A 15.61% property tax hike
The real estate market is hot in Tri-Taylor right now, which is good news for homeowners like Leonardo Fallucca and Kathleen M. Sullivan who recently sold their home at 913 S. Oakley Blvd. for $415,000.
Having purchased the 3-bedroom historic row home in 2015 for $265,000 (or $281,517 in today's dollars), Fallucca and Sullivan made a decent profit on the sale.
They didn't make out as well on property taxes, however. While owning the home, they paid $23,354 in property taxes, for an effective property tax rate of 5.63 percent according to Blockshopper.
The first year Fallucca and Sullivan owned the home, they paid $7,180 in taxes. Last year, Cook County billed them $8,301 -- or a 15.61 percent increase over three years.
In Lawndale, the multi-family home at 3919 W. Lexington St. sits boarded up today.
Chicago educator Leviis Haney purchased the six-bedroom bungalow as an investment property in 2005 for $166,000 ($214,418 today with inflation).
Haney said on his Facebook page in 2017 that he had made $100,000 in improvements on the property and had worked out a deal with the bank for a short sale.
With no takers, though, the principal of The Joseph Sears School in Kenilworth School District #38 turned the home back over to the bank last year, Blockshopper reported.
Based on the tax history on the property, Haney is better off without it.
In the first year that he owned the property, Haney paid $496 in property taxes. Last year, the taxes were $1,453 -- a 192.94 percent increase.
By the time the property was sold to its latest owner -- another investor -- on March 28, the purchase price was down to $39,000, according to Zillow.
In all, the property taxes on the home between 2005 and 2018 were $13,935, for an effective property tax rate of 35.73 percent.
Effective Property Tax Rates for Chicago's West Side July 1-Dec. 31, 2018
|Neighborhood||Effective Tax Rate||Median Tax Rate||Median Sale Price|
|West Garfield Park||3.70%||$3,294||$89,000|
|East Garfield Park||2.19%||$3,245||$148,250|
|University Village / Little Italy||1.58%||$5,050||$320,000|
|Heart of Chicago||1.42%||$4,428||$312,500|
|Near West Side||1.28%||$4,681||$365,000|