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Maryland Property Taxes – What You Need to Know


Maryland property taxes are charged at the city and county level. Cities and counties in Maryland rely heavily on property taxes to fund their budgets. In an average Maryland county, property taxes collected make up about 30% of the county budget. In the average Maryland city, property taxes make up about 35% of the budget. The state budget is funded mostly through state income taxes; less than 10% of Maryland property taxes go to the state.

Tax rates are determined at the local level as well and can vary widely by area. The state of Maryland does not impose restrictions on cities or counties regarding the limits of Maryland property taxes that can be charged. Property tax bills are issued in July or August of each year.

Like in most states, the amount of Maryland property taxes you’ll pay is dependent upon two factors: the value of your home and the millage rate. The local tax assessor will estimate the value of your home and send you a notice regarding the fair market value of your home. Then, when the budget is created, the tax department will use the combined property values for the area along with the revenue requirements to meet the upcoming budget to determine the millage rate. Counties and cities must hold a public meeting before the millage rate can be raised, but it can be lowered at any time.

Maryland ranks 13th among the states in terms of the amount of property taxes paid by its residents. The average homeowner in Maryland owns a home that is worth $280,000 and pays about $2100 a year in property taxes.

If you receive a notice from the tax assessor informing you of his determination of the fair market value of your home and you think it’s too high, you can appeal his valuation. Once you file your appeal, you’ll be given a hearing where you’ll be allowed to explain why you think the valuation of your home was too high. In turn, the tax assessor will explain how he arrived at his figure. If it is determined that your tax value is too high, you may receive a reduction in Maryland property taxes owed.

Like most other states, Maryland also offers a homestead exemption for homeowners. You may file for a tax reduction on your primary residence. This homestead exemption will reduce the taxes paid on this home. A homestead exemption can only be filed on your primary residence; so you can have just one on file at a time. You must only apply for your homestead exemption once; it stays in effect until you sell your home. Maryland also has a property tax credit program for lower income families. You must apply for this tax credit each year, and you must meet income eligibility requirements.

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