Overview of Vermont Taxes
Vermont has a progressive state income tax with a top marginal rate that ranks as one of the highest in the country. The state also charges a 6% sales tax, with some cities levying an additional 1%. Vermont’s property tax rates also rank among the highest in the U.S.
Number of State Personal Exemptions
Your Income Taxes Breakdown
|Tax Type||Marginal |
|Total Income Taxes|
|Income After Taxes|
* These are the taxes owed for the 2020 - 2021 filing season.
Your 2020 Federal Income Tax Comparison
- Your marginal federal income tax rate
- Your effective federal income tax rate
- Your federal income taxes
Total Estimated 2020 Tax Burden
Total Estimated Tax Burden $
Percent of income to taxes = %
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Our income tax calculator calculates your federal, state and local taxes based on several key inputs: your household income, location, filing status and number of personal exemptions. Also, we separately calculate the federal income taxes you will owe in the 2019 - 2020 filing season based on the Trump Tax Plan.
How Income Taxes Are Calculated
- First, we calculate your adjusted gross income (AGI) by taking your total household income and reducing it by certain items such as contributions to your 401(k).
- Next, from AGI we subtract exemptions and deductions (either itemized or standard) to get your taxable income. Exemptions can be claimed for each taxpayer as well as dependents such as one’s spouse or children.
- Based on your filing status, your taxable income is then applied to the the tax brackets to calculate your federal income taxes owed for the year.
- Your location will determine whether you owe local and / or state taxes.
- Last Updated: January 1, 2020...read more
When Do We Update? - We regularly check for any updates to the latest tax rates and regulations.
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- Our Tax Expert
Jennifer Mansfield, CPA Tax
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.
Taxes in Vermont
Vermont State Tax Quick Facts
- Income tax: 3.35% - 8.75%
- Sales tax: 6% - 7%
- Property tax: 1.86% average effective rate
- Gas tax: 12.10 cents per gallon of regular gasoline, 28 cents per gallon of diesel
Vermont’s tax system consists of a state personal income tax, estate tax, state sales tax, local property tax, local sales taxes and a number of additional excise taxes on products like gasoline and cigarettes. For the 2020 tax year, the income tax in Vermont has a top rate of 8.75%, which places it as one of the highest rates in the U.S. Meanwhile, total state and local sales taxes range from 6% to 7%.
A financial advisor in Vermont can help you understand how taxes fit into your overall financial goals. Financial advisors can also help with investing and financial plans, including retirement, homeownership, insurance and more, to make sure you are preparing for the future.
Vermont Income Taxes
Vermont has four tax brackets for the 2020 tax year, which is a change from previous years when there were five brackets. Rates range from 3.35% to 8.75%. The table below shows rates and brackets for the four main filing statuses in Vermont.
Income Tax Brackets
|Vermont Taxable Income||Rate|
|$0 - $40,350||3.35%|
|$40,350 - $97,800||6.60%|
|$97,800 - $204,000||7.60%|
|Married, Filing Jointly|
|Vermont Taxable Income||Rate|
|$0 - $67,450||3.35%|
|$67,450 - $163,000||6.60%|
|$163,000 - $248,350||7.60%|
|Married, Filing Separately|
|Vermont Taxable Income||Rate|
|$0 - $33,725||3.35%|
|$33,725 - $81,500||6.60%|
|$81,500 - $124,175||7.60%|
|Head of Household|
|Vermont Taxable Income||Rate|
|$0 - $54,100||3.35%|
|$54,100 - $139,650||6.60%|
|$139,650 - $226,200||7.60%|
The rates above do not apply to your total income, but rather to taxable income. Taxable income incorporates adjustments, deductions and exemptions so it is almost always lower than your total income.
To calculate taxable income in Vermont, begin with federal taxable income, which can be located on your Federal Form 1040. From there, you should add any income from interest on non-Vermont state and local debt obligations (e.g. New York City municipal bonds) and add back state and local income taxes (which can be deducted federally). Then, you can subtract any income from United States debt obligations (e.g. U.S. savings notes) and subtract the capital gains exclusion (see more in the capital gains section below).
Vermont Tax Credits
After calculating your income tax liability, you may be able to claim some credits to reduce your tax bill or increase your refund. Credits available to individuals in Vermont include the Credit for Child & Dependent Care Expenses, the Elderly or Permanently Totally Disabled Tax Credit and the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). These are all based on federal credits. The first two are equal to 24% of the federal credit and the EITC is equal to 36% of the federal credit.
Vermont Capital Gains Tax
Most capital gains in Vermont are subject to the personal income tax rates of 3.35% - 8.75%. This includes all short-term gains, but long term-gains may be eligible for an exclusion. Since 2014, taxpayers have been able to claim an exclusion of up to $5,000 on their federal net adjusted capital gains.
Certain types of long-term gains may be eligible for an alternate exclusion equal to 40% of the net adjusted capital gain on assets held at least three years. This exclusion cannot be claimed on residential real estate used as a taxpayer’s primary or non-primary home, depreciable personal property (except farm property or standing timber) or any publicly traded financial instruments (including stocks and bonds). Income from capital gains on other types of property (like commercial real estate) is eligible for this 40% exclusion after three years.
Vermont Sales Tax
The base sales tax in Vermont is 6%. This applies to goods and some services in Vermont. Certain types of items are specifically exempted. In addition to that 6% state rate, a number of cities in Vermont collect their own 1% local option sales tax.
The table below shows the state, local option and total sales tax rates for the Vermont cities that collect the extra tax. Any cities not shown do not collect the additional 1% tax, which means that taxable goods bought there will only be subject to the 6% state rate.
Sales Tax Rates(Updated December 2020)
|City||State Rate||City Rate||Total Rate|
|St. Albans Town||6.00%||1.00%||7.00%|
The most important exemptions to these rates are for food (as long as it is intended for off-site consumption), prescription and some over-the-counter drugs, medical equipment (such as wheelchairs or oxygen equipment) and newspapers. Purchases of clothing are also untaxed, as Vermont is one of a handful of states to exempt clothing items from sales tax. Motor vehicles are subject to a 6% tax levied by the Vermont Department of Motor Vehicles and are therefore exempt from the local option rates above.
Some products are subject to rates higher than those listed above. The state tax on hotels, motels and restaurant meals (the “Meals and Rooms Tax”) is 9%, plus an additional 1% local option meals and rooms tax collected by some cities. Alcohol is also subject to a higher sales tax.
Vermont Property Tax
Vermont’s property tax rates rank among the highest in the U.S. On average, Vermont homeowners pay more than $4,300 per year in property taxes, which leads to a 1.86% average effective rate. That is the fifth-highest average effective property tax rate in the country. Note that property is assessed and tax rates are set at the municipal level in Vermont, so rates can vary from one city or town to the next.
Considering buying a house in the Green Mountain state, or looking to refinance a property you already own? Take a look at our Vermont mortgage guide for details on rates and information about getting a mortgage in the state.
Vermont Gas Tax
While gasoline purchases in Vermont are not subject to sales tax, there is an excise tax on fuel in Vermont. The state tax on regular gasoline totals 12.10 cents per gallon, and the state tax on diesel fuel is 28 cents per gallon.
Vermont Alcohol Tax
Taxes on alcoholic beverages in Vermont vary depending on the type of beverage. Vermont is a control state, which means that it controls the wholesale of liquor, which is sold through agency stores. The state therefore captures revenue by selling liquor, which functions as a de facto tax. It also taxes the agency stores based on their total revenue, with rates ranging from 5% to 25%. The Tax Foundation has estimated that these taxes, along with the revenue earned through the state liquor control system, are equivalent to an excise tax of $7.68 per gallon of liquor, which is the 19th-highest rate in the nation.
Beer and wine (which are not part of the control system) face two types of taxes in Vermont. The first is an alcohol sales tax of 10% (plus a 1% local option tax in some cities). The second is an excise tax, which us 27 cents per gallon of beer and 55 cents per gallon of wine.
Vermont Estate Tax
For 2020, the Vermont estate tax applies to gross estates with a value of $4.25 million or more. For 2021, that number jumps to $5 million. If the total value of the decedent’s in-state and out-of-state assets exceeds that amount, a state estate tax return is required. Taxes may not be required if the property is being left to a surviving spouse. Any estates worth more than the $4.25 million cut-off are taxed at a rate of 16%.
- Multiple polls by Gallup, Inc. have rated Vermont as the least religious state in the U.S.
- The capital of Vermont is Montpelier, while the largest city is Burlington, with a population of about 42,000.
- Vermont’s state animal is the Morgan horse.
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.
To find the places with the lowest tax burdens, SmartAsset calculated the amount of money a specific person would pay in income, sales, property and fuel taxes in each county in the country.
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 after taxes. This balance 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 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 calculate a total tax burden. Finally, each county was ranked and indexed, on a scale of 0 to100. The county with the lowest tax burden received a score of 100 and the remaining counties in the study were scored based on how closely their tax burden compares.