Overview of South Dakota Taxes
Across South Dakota, the average effective property tax rate is 1.32%. This surpasses both the national average of 1.08% and the average in North Dakota, which is 1.01%.
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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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South Dakota Property Taxes
The state of South Dakota has a relatively simple property tax system. Tax rates, set by local government bodies such as municipalities and school districts, are applied to the full market value of residential property. Across the state, the average effective property tax rate is 1.32%. Homeowners living in a primary residence in South Dakota are eligible for a tax rate reduction.
If you are interested in purchasing a property in South Dakota or want to refinance one, have a look at our mortgage guide for information on rates and getting a mortgage in the Mount Rushmore State.
A financial advisor in South Dakota 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 South Dakota
Property taxes in South Dakota can be levied by any of the following tax authorities: school districts, cities, townships, counties, water districts and additional special districts for specific purposes such as fire protection or sanitary systems. Taxes are based on a home’s true market value, which is determined annually by the county director of equalization in each county.
Homeowners who believe their assessment is too high (higher than they could get by actually selling their home) have the right to appeal the valuation. Appeals should be mailed to the local board of equalization by mid-March. The local board will hold a hearing and inform you of their decision by the end of the month.
If you disagree with that finding, you can make further appeals with the county board, then the Office of Hearing Examiners and finally the circuit court.
South Dakota Property Tax Rates
The tax rate on a home in South Dakota is equal to the total of all the rates for tax districts in which that home lies, including school districts, municipalities and counties.
An owner-occupied residence, which is a property that the owner lives in, is eligible for a lower tax rate than other types of property. New homeowners only need to apply once for the owner-occupied classification. If you have already received the classification, you will continue to receive the property tax reduction, as long as you still own and live in the home. The owner-occupied classification reduces school district property taxes for homeowners.
South Dakota’s tax rates are expressed as mills, which are equal to one-tenth of a percent. In other words, one mill is equal to $1 of taxes for every $1,000 in home value. However, because tax rates may vary widely from one area to the next, it is also useful to consider property taxes in terms of effective property tax rate. This rate provides an easy way to compare property taxes by looking at what homeowners pay in tax as a percentage of their home value.
The table below shows average effective rates for every county in South Dakota, as well as their median home values and median annual property tax payments.
|County||Median Home Value||Median Annual Property Tax Payment||Average Effective Property Tax Rate|
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Minnehaha County is the largest county in South Dakota, with a population of just over 183,600. It also contains the state’s largest city, Sioux Falls. The county’s average effective tax rate is 1.43%, somewhat higher than the South Dakota average.
Mill rates in the county vary depending on where you live. The Minnehaha County general mill rate is about 3.33 mills for 2019. Municipalities levy taxes at a rate of 2.8 to 6.6 mills. The rate in Sioux Falls is about 4.46 mills.
School district rates are the largest single source of taxes in the county. The Sioux Falls School District rate is around 8.28 mills for owner-occupied residences, and 12.47 for all other types of property.
Pennington County stretches from the Wyoming border west to Badlands National Park. It contains Rapid City, the second largest city in South Dakota. The county’s average effective property tax rate is 1.43%, 17th highest in the state.
In Rapid City, the total mill rate on owner-occupied residences varies between 15 and 25 mills. That includes the county general rate, the Rapid City municipal rate and the Rapid City School District Rate. Overall, the average tax rate for owner-occupied homes in the county is about 15 mills.
This eastern South Dakota county has the highest property taxes in the state. The median annual property taxes paid by homeowners in Lincoln County is $2,848. A major reason for the high tax payments here is that Lincoln County also has the highest median home value in the state in almost $210,000. The county’s average effective property tax rate is 1.36%.
Brown County is situated along the state border with North Dakota. The county’s largest city is Aberdeen. Property tax rates in the county are near the state average, as the average effective rate in Brown County is 1.36%.
The average property tax rate in Brookings County is 1.38%, slightly above the state average. Taxpayers in Brookings County have a median annual property tax bill of $2,272. This is the fourth highest figure of any county in the state.
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.