Overview of Arkansas Taxes
Property taxes in Arkansas are generally lower than in most other states. In fact, in 68 of the state’s 75 counties, the typical annual property tax payment is lower than $800. The statewide average effective property tax rate is just 0.63%, tenth lowest in the U.S.
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To calculate the exact amount of property tax you will owe requires your property's assessed value and the property tax rates based on your property's address. Please note that we can only estimate your property tax based on median property taxes in your area. There are typically multiple rates in a given area, because your state, county, local schools and emergency responders each receive funding partly through these taxes. In our calculator, we take your home value and multiply that by your county's effective property tax rate. This is equal to the median property tax paid as a percentage of the median home value in your county.
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Jennifer Mansfield, CPA, JD/LLM-Tax, is a Certified Public Accountant with more than 30 years of experience providing tax advice. SmartAsset’s tax expert has a degree in Accounting and Business/Management from the University of Wyoming, as well as both a Masters in Tax Laws and a Juris Doctorate from Georgetown University Law Center. Jennifer has mostly worked in public accounting firms, including Ernst & Young and Deloitte. She is passionate about helping provide people and businesses with valuable accounting and tax advice to allow them to prosper financially. Jennifer lives in Arizona and was recently named to the Greater Tucson Leadership Program.
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Arkansas Property Taxes
In the state of Arkansas, residential property is taxed at the state, county, city and school district level. Taxes are based off the property’s appraised value, or market value.
Property taxes in Arkansas are lower than in most of the rest of the country. The vast majority of the state's counties have median annual property tax payments below $800. The statewide average effective property tax rate is 0.63%.
Not having to worry about the difference in property taxes from county to county can help relieve some of the stress that comes with purchasing a home. Our Arkansas mortgage guide can also help you feel a little better about the homebuying process by breaking down information about mortgage rates and other details in the Natural State.
A financial advisor in Arkansas can help you understand how homeownership fits into your overall financial goals. Financial advisors can also help with investing and financial plans, including taxes, homeownership, retirement and more, to make sure you are preparing for the future.
How Property Taxes Work in Arkansas
Property in Arkansas is regularly appraised by professional appraisers that are designated by the state. The appraised value is equal to the market value, which is the price of the house if it was to be sold on the open market. Tax rates, however, do not apply to appraised value, but rather to assessed value.
Assessed value is equal to 20% of the appraised value of a property. For example, a home that has a market value of $100,000 would have an assessed value of $20,000. So tax rates only apply to that $20,000.
One important note about assessed value in Arkansas is that it cannot increase by more than 5% in any one year. So even if the market value doubles, the assessed value can only increase by 5%.
Property Tax Rates in Arkansas
Tax rates in Arkansas are applied in terms of mills. A mill is equal to 1/1,000, or one tenth of a percent. So if your tax rate is 30 mills and your assessed value is $20,000, your property tax bill would be $600. That’s $20,000 x (30/1,000). The millage rates in Arkansas vary by county, city and school district.
Another way of looking at property taxes is the average effective rate. This refers to the average annual property tax payment divided by the average property value. The table below shows average effective property tax rates, as well as median property tax payments and home values, for every county in Arkansas.
|County||Median Home Value||Median Annual Property Tax Payment||Average Effective Property Tax Rate|
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Pulaski County, the most populous county in Arkansas, also has the highest property taxes in the state. The average homeowner in Pulaski County pays $1,202 per year in property taxes, which works out to an effective property tax rate of 0.81%. That's the highest in Arkansas, but it's still below the 1.08% national average.
The average millage rate in Pulaski County is 58.69. The highest rate is 70 mills in Little Rock, and the lowest rate is 50.5 mills in the East End school district. Across the county, school district rates range from 40.4 mills to 48.3, accounting for the majority of total property taxes.
Benton County, in the northwest corner of the state, encompasses the cities of Bentonville, Rogers and parts of Springdale. The average millage rate in Benton County is 55.73 mills. Rates are highest in the Bentonville school district. For example, in portions of the city of Springdale that overlap with the Bentonville school district, the total rate is 63.9 mills. Typically, homeowners in Benton County pay $1,222 in property taxes every year. That's the highest median annual payment in the state.
The median home value in Washington County is just under $163,000 and the typical homeowner pays $1,149 in property taxes annually. That’s good for an effective property tax rate of 0.71%, which is tied for the third highest in the state.
Actual rates (which apply to assessed value) range from 46 mills in rural Greenland School District to 57.95 mills in parts of Fayetteville School District that overlap with the cities of Elkins, Farmington and Johnson. The millage rate for just the city of Fayetteville is 6.8 mills, one of the state's highest city rates.
If you have questions about how property taxes can affect your overall financial plans, a financial advisor in Fayetteville can help you out.
Sebastian County sits on the Arkansas River, along the state border with Oklahoma. Median property tax payments in the county are just $768 per year, about a third of the national average of $2,090. You can find the highest rates in Sebastian county in the city of Fort Smith in the Fort Smith School District. The rate there is 58.06 mills. The countywide average millage rate is 52.06.
Faulkner County is the fifth most populous county in Arkansas, but its average effective property tax rate of 0.65% ranks as the 14th highest in the state. Actual tax rates, which are based on assessed values, average 49.84 mills. The vast majority of that goes to support local schools, as the average school district millage rate in the county is 39.72.
Saline County sits between Little Rock and Hot Springs in Central Arkansas. Rates in the county depend on the city and the school district in which your house is located. Including all city, county and school district taxes, the average rate is 51.57 mills. This rate applies to assessed value, however, which is just 20% of market value. For that reason, the actual amount of property taxes paid in Saline County is much lower. The county’s average effective property tax rate is 0.71%.
The typical homeowner in Craighead County pays $777 annually in property taxes, which ranks as the eighth highest payment in the state. The countywide property tax rate averages to 7.62 mills. In addition, cities in Craighead have rates ranging from 0.5 mills in Brookland to 3 mills in Jonesboro. Total school district rates average 38.72 mills. In total, the highest millage rate in the county is in the City of Jonesboro in the Valley View School District. The total property tax millage rate there is 51.6 mills.
The average effective property tax rate in Garland County is 0.56%. That's around half the national average. So if your home’s market value is $100,000, you can expect to pay about $560 annually in property taxes.
However, this may vary depending on the location of your home. In the Mount Ida School District, the total tax rate is just 37.6 mills. In Lonsdale, which is part of the Benton School District, the rate is 47.1 mills.
Property taxes in White County are significantly lower than in most of the country. The typical homeowner here pays just $573 a year in residential property taxes. That's based on an average millage rate in the county of 43.01 mills. In Searcy, the county seat, the rate averages to 40.75 mills. The highest rate in the county can be found in the city of Pangburn where the millage rate is 48.1.
Jefferson County, which is named after President Thomas Jefferson, is the 11th most populous county in the state of Arkansas. The average annual property tax payment in the county is just $504, 34th highest in the state. The average millage rate is 53.53 mills, slightly higher than the state average of 47.68.
Places Receiving the Most Value for Their Property Taxes
SmartAsset’s interactive map highlights the places across the country where property tax dollars are being spent most effectively. Zoom between states and the national map to see the counties getting the biggest bang for their property tax buck.
Our study aims to find the places in the United States where people are getting the most value for their property tax dollars. To do this, we looked at property taxes paid, school rankings and the change in property values over a five-year period.
First, we used the number of households, median home value and average property tax rate to calculate a per capita property tax collected for each county.
As a way to measure the quality of schools, we analyzed the math and reading/language arts proficiencies for every school district in the country. We created an average score for each district by looking at the scores for every school in that district, weighting it to account for the number of students in each school. Within each state, we assigned every county a score between 1 and 10 (with 10 being the best) based on the average scores of the districts in each county.
Then, we calculated the change in property tax value in each county over a five-year period. Places where property values rose by the greatest amount indicated where consumers were motivated to buy homes, and a positive return on investment for homeowners in the community.
Finally, we calculated a property tax index, based on the criteria above. Counties with the highest scores were those where property tax dollars are going the furthest.