Michele B.: We’re staying one more year and then we’re out.


Michele B. owns a 1,648 square foot, 3-bedroom, 1.5-bathroom Midlothian home that is currently assessed at $147,410.

“It’s made it really difficult,” Michele said. “I’m a single mom with two kids I’m trying to raise and every time my property taxes go up, my mortgage goes up and it makes it really hard to make ends meet. I’ve almost lost my house a couple of times because of them raising my taxes and mortgage and everything else.”

Michele took possession of the home in 2005  when it was worth around $185,000, or $239,125 in today’s dollars. She has paid $43,884 in property taxes since 2005, more than 23 percent of the original value of her home.

“My plan was to move next summer, but my daughter wants to graduate with her friends,” Michele said. “We’re staying one more year and then we’re out. It is too much here.”

Michele is currently paying $4,699 per year in property taxes on her home, about 3.1 percent of the Cook County Assessor claimed value of $147,410.

“I think my money is lining somebody else’s pockets and making their life cushy while I’m trying to make ends meet and survive,” Michele said.

Indiana has a hard 1 percent cap on property taxes. This means local governments are not allowed under state law to charge homeowner’s more than 1 percent of their home’s assessed value per year. The average property tax rate for the state of Indiana is 0.89 percent. Meanwhile, the average property tax rate in Illinois is 2.3 percent.

"Lower property taxes would help me,” Michele said.

If Michele lived in Indiana the most she could be charged in property taxes would be $1m474 per year or $3,225 less than what she currently pays in Illinois.

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