Before you leave New Jersey, take another look
So many are contemplating or have made the move out of New Jersey. The chief complaint is that New Jersey property taxes are killing them. Most say that they can’t continue to carry the load of the tax burden. The phrase “New Jersey taxes are killing me” could become the official state slogan. I get it, there’s no question that New Jersey has the highest property taxes in the country.
The average home value here in Jersey is up 24% in two years to an all-time high of $500,628. In 2018, the average home value here in New Jersey was $335,000. The average effective property tax rate here in New Jersey is 2.4%, so for that average $500,000 home, you’ll be paying over $12,000 a year for property taxes. That’s big. The national average effective property tax rate is 1%. Again, I get it.
Just for a minute let’s take a look at other taxes that are assessed in other states as compared to here in Jersey. Over half of the states here in the U.S. have vehicle property taxes, meaning you’re repaying taxes every year on a car valued at $25,000. In Mississippi, Virginia, and Rhode Island, you‘ll be paying close to $1,000 a year in vehicle tax. This can add up. You’re not paying that tax here in New Jersey. Take the Individual Income Tax Burden, New Jersey is 2.47% as opposed to New York which has the highest at 4.96%. Did you know that New Jersey ranks 43rd in Total Sales and Exercise Tax Burden at 2.57% as opposed to the worst state which is Hawaii coming in at a large 6.60%?
When you look at the Overall Tax Burden by state, New Jersey isn’t in the top 5, it ranks 7th throughout the country and that includes counting the worst property taxes. There are 7 states behind New Jersey with less than a 1 percentage point difference. So yes the property taxes are bad but when you look at the total tax burden it’s not as bad as projected.
Before you leave New Jersey think about all the great resources, events, and venues that New Jersey has to offer. I have many dislocated New Jerseyans who still listen to my radio show through our app just because they miss New Jersey. They miss the Parkway and the Turnpike which are two of the nation’s major highways that are well kept. They miss the ocean and our beaches, they miss the proximity of being nestled between two of the country’s biggest cities Philadelphia and New York. They miss the unequaled sound and power of New Jersey music and its concerts, they miss the neighborhoods, pizza and bagels, the parks, Atlantic City and mostly they miss the Jersey attitude, the” I Got Your Back Attitude” that separates Jersey from any other state in the country.
So my suggestion is that you take a long hard look and weigh all the factors before you leave. You may be surprised that the grass isn’t as green as you think on the other side. Oh, and if you leave, I’ll miss you.
The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 weekend host Big Joe Henry. Any opinions expressed are Big Joe’s own.