Can I Deduct My St. Louis County Property Tax From My Taxes?

The federal tax code allows you to deduct certain state and local taxes from your taxable income, including property taxes. As a resident of St. Louis County, Missouri, you are liable for property taxes that you can deduct if you itemize deductions on your federal tax return. Located west of the city of St. Louis, St. Louis County is the largest county in Missouri and is home to 1 million people.

Real Estate Tax

St. Louis County residents pay real estate property taxes to the county and 152 subcounty jurisdictions. Your final tax rate is the sum of the tax rates levied by all applicable jurisdictions. You can deduct property taxes only if you are the owner of the property and the tax has been imposed on you as owner by the taxing jurisdictions. If you own more than one piece of real estate, you can deduct the real estate taxes on all your property. If you are a tenant-shareholder in a housing cooperative, you can deduct your apportioned share of the real estate taxes paid by the cooperative.

Deduction Qualifications

St. Louis County and its subcounty jurisdictions collect real estate property taxes for the general public welfare, based on the assessed value of the real estate. They apply a uniform tax rate for all property within a taxing jurisdiction. These characteristics qualify St. Louis County's real estate taxes for a federal deduction. You can’t deduct certain real estate-related items even if they are included in your tax bill, such as levies for neighborhood improvements like new curbs and sidewalks. You can’t deduct itemized charges for municipal services such as garbage pickup. You also can’t deduct homeowner association fees.

Taxes Paid

You can deduct only the real estate taxes you paid during the tax year. If you pay your real estate property taxes with your mortgage payment through a tax escrow account, you can only deduct the property tax the escrow custodian actually paid to the taxing jurisdiction, not the amount you paid into escrow. If you receive a property tax refund, you must reduce your federal deduction by the refund amount.

Personal Property

St. Louis County also collects a personal property tax on motor vehicles and certain other possessions. This countywide tax is in addition to real estate taxes. Personal property taxes can be deducted in full if they are based on the monetary value of the car or other taxable personal property, as they are in St. Louis County. The tax also must be charged on a yearly basis even if you pay in periodic installments during the year. You can only deduct the personal property tax you actually paid during the year.

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About the Author

Herb Kirchhoff has more than three decades of hands-on experience as an avid garden hobbyist and home handyman. Since retiring from the news business in 2008, Kirchhoff takes care of a 12-acre rural Michigan lakefront property and applies his experience to his vegetable and flower gardens and home repair and renovation projects.

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