Oklahoma boasts some of the lowest property taxes in the US, coming in at 48th with an average of $826 per homeowner.
As in most states, there isn’t precisely an Oklahoma property tax. Those taxes get assessed on the local level to fund schools, health systems, and municipalities.
If you have a property investment in the state, it’s good to know what goes into determining the tax and how to plan to pay it. Let’s take a quick look at how the rates are set and available deductions if you qualify.
Calculating the Tax Rate
The County Excise Board sets the tax rates for its respective county. The rate is a complex calculation that ensures enough funding is received to pay for schools, libraries, and government services.
Tulsa County has the highest property tax rate in the state at 1.13 percent. However, your actual tax bill could vary depending on what the county assessor sets as your property’s fair market value. That value is multiplied by the tax rate to determine how much you owe each year.
The county collected $881,956,209 in property taxes this year, which went to pay for county services, school districts, cities, and emergency medical services.
Your deduction options are limited since the property is a real estate investment and not your primary residence. The big deduction for property owners across the country is a homestead exemption. To get that, you have to be the owner of record and live on the property.
In Tulsa County, several other options follow onto the homestead exemption. These include a value limitation for seniors and veterans and a cap on increases. For all of them, you have to be able to qualify for the homestead exemption first.
What you can take advantage of is deducting the property taxes as a business expense. There are limits to how much you can deduct, but given the low tax rates in Oklahoma, you’re unlikely to hit the $10,000 cap.
You can also try to reduce your tax bill by appealing the fair market value assessment done by the county assessor. You have to file a written informal appeal or complaint with the assessor’s office laying out why you think the value is off. The appeal has to get filed within 30 calendar days from when the tax notice was mailed.
Planning for Your Oklahoma Property Tax Bill
Property taxes get paid once a year as a lump sum. It’s important to be setting aside some of your rental income each month to save toward paying that bill. You should have some idea of how much you need to save up based on what you paid the previous year.
In Tulsa County, property taxes are due between January 1 and March 15. Late tax payments get assessed an increasing percent as a fine.
Get Help Managing Your Tulsa Property
For any real estate investor, keeping expenses to a minimum allows you to maximize the profit you make on a particular property. However, in Oklahoma, property tax is one expense you have little control over. Because it’s a rental property and not your primary residence, you miss out on some deductions and caps but can still take the tax amount off as an expense on your income tax.
Need help tracking expenses and understanding your property tax bill? We provide landlords with a complete breakdown as part of our property management services in Tulsa.