Loading
Tap on the profile icon to edit
your financial details.

California Income Tax Calculator

Your Details Done
Update your information here.
OK

Overview of California Taxes

California has among the highest taxes in the nation. Sales and income tax are generally high but effective property tax rates are below the national average.

Retired? Use our Retirement Income Tax Calculator.
Enter your financial details to calculate your taxes
Household Income
Dismiss
Location
Dismiss
Filing Status
401(k) Contribution
Dismiss
IRA Contribution
Dismiss
Itemized Deductions
Dismiss
Number of Personal Exemptions
Dismiss
Your Income Taxes
Tax Type Marginal 
Tax Rate
Effective 
Tax Rate
Tax 
Amount
Federal
FICA
State
Local
Total Income Taxes
Income After Taxes
Your Tax Breakdown
Income Tax $
Sales Tax $
Fuel Tax $
Property Tax$
Total Estimated Tax Burden $
Percent of income to taxes = %
Total Estimated Tax Burden
$
Choose the right savings account for you
APY
1.15%
Account Type: Savings
Initial Deposit: $0 Rate: 1.15% Min Balance: $0 Fees: $0
APY
1.10%
Account Type: MMA
Initial Deposit: $1,000 Rate: 1.09% Min Balance: $0 Fees: $0
APY
1.05%
Account Type: Savings
Initial Deposit: $0 Rate: 1.04% Min Balance: $0 Fees: $0
Unfortunately, we are currently unable to find savings account that fit your criteria. Please change your search criteria and try again.
Searching for accounts...
Disclosure
Compare Savings Account Rates
Bank
APY/Rate
From Our Partner
More About This Page
How helpful was this page in answering your question?
not helpful
very helpful
​If you could change one thing about ​this page what would it be?​
Thank you for your answer! Your feedback is very important to us.
We are working hard to improve our product and could use your help!
We pay $30 for 30 minutes on the phone to hear your thoughts on what we can do better.
Please enter your email if you'd like to be contacted to help.

Please enter your name
California state tax quick facts
  • Income tax: 1% - 13.3%
  • Sales tax: 7.5% - 9.5%
  • Property tax: 0.81% average effective rate
  • Gas tax: 45.39 cents per gallon

California has among the highest taxes in the nation. Its base sales tax rate of 7.5% is higher than that of any other state, and its top marginal income tax rate of 13.3% is the highest state income tax rate in the country. The Golden State fares slightly better where real estate is concerned. On average, homeowners pay just 0.81% of their actual home values in real estate taxes each year, 18th lowest in the country.

Of course, all of these values vary depending on each taxpayer’s individual finances. For example, if you earn less than $54,000 per year, your marginal rate in California will be no higher than 8%, and your effective income tax rate (the actual amount you pay in taxes) will be closer to 4%. Below, we’ll dig into the specifics of California’s tax system and how it might affect your wallet.

California Income Tax

California has a progressive income tax, which means rates are lower for lower earners, and grow as incomes increase, similar to the federal income tax system. In all, there are nine income tax brackets in California, with rates ranging from as low as 1% up to 12.3%. The table further demonstrates tax rates for Californians.

Income Tax Brackets

Single Filers
California Taxable IncomeRate
$0 - $7,8501.00%
$7,850 - $18,6102.00%
$18,610 - $29,3724.00%
$29,372 - $40,7736.00%
$40,773 - $51,5308.00%
$51,530 - $263,2229.30%
$263,222 - $315,86610.30%
$315,866 - $526,44311.30%
$526,443+12.30%
Married, Filing Jointly
California Taxable IncomeRate
$0 - $15,7001.00%
$15,700 - $37,2202.00%
$37,220 - $58,7444.00%
$58,744 - $81,5466.00%
$81,546 - $103,0608.00%
$103,060 - $526,4449.30%
$526,444 - $631,73210.30%
$631,732 - $1,052,88611.30%
$1,052,886+12.30%
Married, Filing Separately
California Taxable IncomeRate
$0 - $7,8501.00%
$7,850 - $18,6102.00%
$18,610 - $29,3724.00%
$29,372 - $40,7736.00%
$40,773 - $51,5308.00%
$51,530 - $263,2229.30%
$263,222 - $315,86610.30%
$315,866 - $526,44311.30%
$526,443+12.30%
Head of Household
California Taxable IncomeRate
$0 - $15,7101.00%
$15,710 - $37,2212.00%
$37,221 - $47,9824.00%
$47,982 - $59,3836.00%
$59,383 - $70,1428.00%
$70,142 - $357,9819.30%
$357,981 - $429,57810.30%
$429,578 - $715,96211.30%
$715,962 - $1,000,00012.30%
$1,000,001+13.30% (1% Mental Health Services Tax Rate + 12.3%)

In addition to those income tax brackets, there is a 1% tax on personal income over $1 million. As part of the Mental Health Services Act, this tax provides funding for mental health programs in the state. It functions like a normal income tax and means that the top marginal rate in California is, effectively, 13.3%. That’s the highest rate in the U.S., but it only applies to income earners with over $1 million in taxable income.

It’s important to note that those rates do not apply to actual income, but adjusted gross income. That is income after all applicable deductions and exemptions have been subtracted. The standard deduction in California is $3,992 for a single filer and $7,984 for joint filers. Taxpayers in California may also be eligible for a number of tax credits, for financial events and expenses including childcare, buying a new home, the purchase of an electric vehicle and installing solar panels on their house.

California Sales Tax

California’s base sales tax is 7.5%, highest in the country. That means that, regardless of where you are in the state, you will pay an additional 7.5% of the purchase price of any taxable good. Since many cities and counties also enact their own sales taxes, however, the actual rate paid throughout much of the state will be even higher than that. The table below shows state and county tax rates for each of the 58 counties in California as well as the combined state, county and city income taxes for the 100 largest cities. These are the rates you would actually pay on taxable products within city limits.

Sales Tax Rates (Updated January 2016)

CountyState RateCounty RateTotal Sales Tax
Alameda7.50%2.000%9.500%
Alpine7.50%0.000%7.500%
Amador7.50%0.500%8.000%
Butte7.50%0.000%7.500%
Calaveras7.50%0.000%7.500%
Colusa7.50%0.000%7.500%
Contra Costa7.50%1.000%8.500%
Del Norte7.50%0.250%7.750%
El Dorado7.50%0.000%7.500%
Fresno7.50%0.725%8.225%
Glenn7.50%0.000%7.500%
Humboldt7.50%0.500%8.000%
Imperial7.50%0.500%8.000%
Inyo7.50%0.500%8.000%
Kern7.50%0.000%7.500%
Kings7.50%0.000%7.500%
Lake7.50%0.000%7.500%
Lassen7.50%0.000%7.500%
Los Angeles7.50%1.500%9.000%
Madera7.50%0.500%8.000%
Marin7.50%1.000%8.500%
Mariposa7.50%0.500%8.000%
Mendocino7.50%0.125%7.625%
Merced7.50%0.000%7.500%
Modoc7.50%0.000%7.500%
Mono7.50%0.000%7.500%
Monterey7.50%0.125%7.625%
Napa7.50%0.500%8.000%
Nevada7.50%0.125%7.625%
Orange7.50%0.500%8.000%
Placer7.50%0.000%7.500%
Plumas7.50%0.000%7.500%
Riverside7.50%0.500%8.000%
Sacramento7.50%0.500%8.000%
San Benito7.50%0.000%7.500%
San Bernardino7.50%0.500%8.000%
San Diego7.50%0.500%8.000%
San Francisco7.50%1.250%8.750%
San Joaquin7.50%0.500%8.000%
San Luis Obispo7.50%0.000%7.500%
San Mateo7.50%1.500%9.000%
Santa Barbara7.50%0.500%8.000%
Santa Clara7.50%1.250%8.750%
Santa Cruz7.50%0.750%8.250%
Shasta7.50%0.000%7.500%
Sierra7.50%0.000%7.500%
Siskiyou7.50%0.000%7.500%
Solano7.50%0.125%7.625%
Sonoma7.50%0.750%8.250%
Stanislaus7.50%0.125%7.625%
Sutter7.50%0.000%7.500%
Tehama7.50%0.000%7.500%
Trinity7.50%0.000%7.500%
Tulare7.50%0.500%8.000%
Tuolumne7.50%0.000%7.500%
Ventura7.50%0.000%7.500%
Yolo7.50%0.000%7.500%
Yuba7.50%0.000%7.500%
CityState RateCounty + City RateTotal Sales Tax
Alhambra7.50%1.500%9.000%
Anaheim7.50%0.500%8.000%
Antioch7.50%1.500%9.000%
Bakersfield7.50%0.000%7.500%
Berkeley7.50%2.000%9.500%
Buena Park7.50%0.500%8.000%
Burbank7.50%1.500%9.000%
Carlsbad7.50%0.500%8.000%
Carson7.50%1.500%9.000%
Chico7.50%0.000%7.500%
Chino7.50%0.500%8.000%
Chula Vista7.50%0.500%8.000%
Citrus Heights7.50%0.500%8.000%
Clovis7.50%0.725%8.225%
Compton7.50%1.500%9.000%
Concord7.50%1.500%9.000%
Corona7.50%0.500%8.000%
Costa Mesa7.50%0.500%8.000%
Daly City7.50%1.500%9.000%
Downey7.50%1.500%9.000%
El Cajon7.50%1.000%8.500%
El Monte7.50%2.000%9.500%
Elk Grove7.50%0.500%8.000%
Escondido7.50%0.500%8.000%
Fairfield7.50%1.125%8.625%
Fontana7.50%0.500%8.000%
Fremont7.50%2.000%9.500%
Fresno7.50%0.725%8.225%
Fullerton7.50%0.500%8.000%
Garden Grove7.50%0.500%8.000%
Glendale7.50%1.500%9.000%
Hawthorne7.50%1.500%9.000%
Hayward7.50%2.500%10.000%
Hemet7.50%0.500%8.000%
Hesperia7.50%0.500%8.000%
Huntington Beach7.50%0.500%8.000%
Indio7.50%0.500%8.000%
Inglewood7.50%2.000%9.500%
Irvine7.50%0.500%8.000%
Jurupa Valley7.50%0.500%8.000%
Lakewood7.50%1.500%9.000%
Lancaster7.50%1.500%9.000%
Livermore7.50%2.000%9.500%
Long Beach7.50%1.500%9.000%
Los Angeles7.50%1.500%9.000%
Menifee7.50%0.500%8.000%
Merced7.50%0.500%8.000%
Mission Viejo7.50%0.500%8.000%
Modesto7.50%0.125%7.625%
Moreno Valley7.50%0.500%8.000%
Murrieta7.50%0.500%8.000%
Newport Beach7.50%0.500%8.000%
Norwalk7.50%1.500%9.000%
Oakland7.50%2.000%9.500%
Oceanside7.50%0.500%8.000%
Ontario7.50%0.500%8.000%
Orange7.50%0.500%8.000%
Oxnard7.50%0.500%8.000%
Palmdale7.50%1.500%9.000%
Pasadena7.50%1.500%9.000%
Pomona7.50%1.500%9.000%
Rancho Cucamonga7.50%0.500%8.000%
Redding7.50%0.000%7.500%
Rialto7.50%0.500%8.000%
Richmond7.50%2.000%9.500%
Riverside7.50%0.500%8.000%
Roseville7.50%0.000%7.500%
Sacramento7.50%1.000%8.500%
Salinas7.50%1.625%9.125%
San Bernardino7.50%0.750%8.250%
San Buenaventura7.50%0.000%7.500%
San Diego7.50%0.500%8.000%
San Francisco7.50%1.250%8.750%
San Jose7.50%1.250%8.750%
San Leandro7.50%2.500%10.000%
San Marcos7.50%0.500%8.000%
San Mateo7.50%1.750%9.250%
Santa Ana7.50%0.500%8.000%
Santa Barbara7.50%0.500%8.000%
Santa Clara7.50%1.250%8.750%
Santa Clarita7.50%1.500%9.000%
Santa Maria7.50%0.750%8.250%
Santa Monica7.50%2.000%9.500%
Santa Rosa7.50%1.250%8.750%
Simi Valley7.50%0.000%7.500%
South Gate7.50%2.500%10.000%
Stockton7.50%1.500%9.000%
Sunnyvale7.50%1.250%8.750%
Temecula7.50%0.500%8.000%
Thousand Oaks7.50%0.000%7.500%
Torrance7.50%1.500%9.000%
Tracy7.50%1.000%8.500%
Vacaville7.50%0.375%7.875%
Vallejo7.50%1.125%8.625%
Victorville7.50%0.500%8.000%
Visalia7.50%0.750%8.250%
Vista7.50%1.000%8.500%
West Covina7.50%1.500%9.000%
Westminster7.50%0.500%8.000%
Whittier7.50%1.500%9.000%

Most items are subject to these rates, but there are some exceptions, as well as certain products that face higher rates. Among the products on which sales taxes are not required are most groceries, prescription medicine and utilities like gas and electricity.

California Alcohol and Cigarette Tax

Products that face separate tax rates include alcoholic beverages, tobacco products and gasoline. For alcohol and cigarettes, rates are assessed based on the quantity of the product purchased. Wine, for example, faces a rate of 20 cents per gallon. For gasoline, there is a 2.25% sales tax rate in addition to a 36 cent per gallon excise tax.

California Property Tax

Proposition 13, passed by California’s voters in 1978, sets the maximum allowable property tax rate at 1% of a home’s assessed value. It also limits increases in assessed value to 2% every year, except if the home has changed ownership or undergone construction. That law has helped keep property taxes paid by Californians below the national average, and in some cases, significantly so. In San Diego, for example, residents pay just 0.69% of home values in property taxes annually.

California Estate Tax

California has no estate tax. In some states, inheritance or gifts are subject to a special tax, in addition to the federal estate tax. Not in California, although inherited income may still be subject to the state income tax.

California Insurance Tax

Insurance premiums are taxable in California. The insurance tax is the fourth largest source of revenue for the state’s general fund. It is imposed on insurance premiums and paid by insurance companies, although in practice it may lead to higher rates for consumers.

Photo credit: flickr
  • California is the largest state by population, with over 38 million residents.
  • The state’s largest economic industries include agriculture, entertainment and high technology.
  • The five most populous cities in the state are Los Angeles, San Diego, San Jose, San Francisco and Fresno.

Places with the Lowest Tax Burden

Are you curious how your tax burden stacks up against others in your state? SmartAsset’s interactive map highlights the counties with the lowest tax burden. Scroll over any county in the state to learn about taxes in that specific area.

Worse
Better
Rank County Income Tax Sales Tax Property Tax Fuel Tax

Methodology

Where you live can have a big impact on both which types of taxes you have to pay each year and how much money you spend on them. SmartAsset calculated the amount of money a specific person would pay in income, sales, property and fuel taxes in each county in the country and ranked the lowest to highest tax burden.

To better compare income tax burdens across counties, we used the national median household income. We then applied relevant deductions and exemptions before calculating federal, state and local income taxes.

In order to determine sales tax burden we estimated that 35% of take-home (after-tax) pay is spent on taxable goods. We multiplied the average sales tax rate for a county by the household income less income tax. This product is then multiplied by 35% to estimate the sales tax paid.

For property taxes, we compared the median property taxes paid in each county.

For fuel taxes, we first distributed statewide vehicle miles traveled down to the county level using the number of vehicles in each county. We then calculated the total number of licensed drivers within each county. The countywide miles were then distributed amongst the licensed drivers in the county, which gave us the miles driven per licensed driver. Using the nationwide average fuel economy, we calculated the average gallons of gas used per driver in each county and multiplied that by the fuel tax.

We then added the dollar amount for income, sales, property and fuel taxes to rank the counties to calculate a total tax burden.

Sources: US Census Bureau 2015 American Community Survey, Government Sources, Avalara, American Petroleum Institute, GasBuddy, UMTRI, Federal Highway Administration, SmartAsset

From Our Partner