Gary H. Smith
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If You Live in One of These Areas, Your Taxes Are About to Skyrocket

By Gary Smith
If You Live in One of These Areas, Your Taxes Are About to Skyrocket

Single-family homeowners on the North Side and central portion of Chicago are about to see their property taxes skyrocket, with some seeing increases of more than 11 percent. When Cook County Clerk Karen Yarbrough released her final calculations on new property tax bills in June, the average increase countywide was about 3.7 percent, regardless of whether if it was a commercial or residential property. However, that percentage varies widely based on region and property type.

 Property Tax Increases Vary by Region

This year’s tax increases have seen a northward shift. While this is good news for southern Cook County residents and business owners, it places a heavier burden on the northern and central parts of Cook County.

For instance, North Side homeowners will see an 11.46 percent increase on average. Homeowners in the central region will see an 11.29 percent increase. In the south portion of the county, taxes will only increase by about 1 percent.

Although many areas are also seeing an increase in commercial property taxes, they will be less than the residential side. Average bills in the northern part of the city will increase 2.99 percent, the central area will see a 9.7 percent increase, and the South Side will see a .08 percent decrease. The northern and northwest suburbs will see a 1.4 percent increase and the south and west suburbs will see a 1.69 percent increase. Yarbrough’s office said the total property tax collections for Cook County will be nearly $15 billion, up from roughly $14.4 billion in 2018.

New Reassessment Formula Increases Property Values

This year, a new formula was used to address inequities in the system, as documented by the Chicago Tribune and ProPublica. That new assessment model shifted some of the tax burden from homeowners in less affluent areas to those in wealthier neighborhoods.

Tax bills vary more in suburban Cook County than they do in Chicago because of the individual school districts, park districts, and other entities that receive parts of suburban tax dollars.

Property owners can try to lower their taxes by appealing for a variety of reasons, including:

  • Incorrect information listed about the property
  • Valuation of the property not in line with like properties in the neighborhood

Each area has a different set of deadlines for filing a property tax appeal. These can be found on the Cook County Assessor’s website.