Overview of West Virginia Taxes
West Virginia has some of the lowest property tax rates in the country. In fact, its average effective property tax rate of 0.55% is lower than all but nine states.
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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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West Virginia Property Tax
Buying a home in the Blue Ridge Mountains or the Shenandoah Valley? If so, you’ll want to know about property taxes in the Mountaineer State. West Virginia has some of the lowest property tax rates in the country. Its average effective property tax rate of 0.55% is the 10th-lowest state rate in the U.S., as comes in at about half of the national average.
If you’re planning a move to West Virginia or considering refinancing, you’ll want to take a look at our West Virginia mortgage guide. It has mortgage rates and important information on mortgages in the Mountain State.
A financial advisor can help you understand how homeownership fits into your overall financial goals. SmartAsset’s free tool matches you with up to three vetted financial advisors who serve your area, and you can interview your advisor matches at no cost to decide which one is right for you. If you’re ready to find an advisor who can help you achieve your financial goals, get started now.
How Property Taxes Work in West Virginia
You can pay property taxes in West Virginia in two annual installments: the first due by Sept. 1 and the second due by March 1. You will receive a 2.5% discount on each of the installments if you pay your taxes before the due date. Taxes paid at least a month late also accrue interest at the rate of 9% per year.
West Virginia’s property taxes are based on the assessed value of a property and the total tax rate that applies to the property. Assessed value is based on, but not equal to, the true value of the property. Homes are reappraised at least once every three years in West Virginia. The objective of the appraisal is to determine the full market value of the property – the price a seller would receive for it on the market.
Assessed value is equal to 60% of that appraised value. Assessed values are updated annually based on market data, and to incorporate improvements or changes made to the property. Homeowners must be notified if assessed value increases by more than $1,000 or 10% in a given year. This gives the homeowner a chance to appeal the assessor’s valuation.
West Virginia Property Tax Rates
Tax rates in West Virginia apply to assessed value. Counties, cities, school districts and other special tax districts can levy property taxes. The total tax rate for an individual property is the sum of those rates, which are expressed as cents per $100 in assessed value.
So, for example, let’s say you have a home with a market value of $100,000 and a tax rate of 80. Your assessed value would be $60,000 (60% of market value). You can then find your taxes by dividing assessed value by 100 and multiplying by the rate, 0.80. In this example, your annual taxes are $480.
To make it easier to compare tax rates in different areas, we use effective rates. The effective tax rate on property is the amount paid annually as a percentage of home value. The table below shows median home value, median annual property taxes and the average effective rate for each of West Virginia’s 55 counties.
|County||Median Home Value||Median Annual Property Tax Payment||Average Effective Property Tax Rate|
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Kanawha County lies along the Kanawha River in central West Virginia. It has a population of around 178,000, making it the largest county in West Virginia. The county’s largest city is Charleston, the state capital.
Property tax rates in Kanawha County are higher than the state average, though they're still low by national standards. The county’s average effective rate is 0.77%, and the median property tax payment is $886 a year.
Located in the Eastern Panhandle of West Virginia, along the border with Maryland, Berkeley County has some of the highest property taxes in the state. The median annual property tax homeowners in Berkeley County pay is $1,307, second-highest in West Virginia. That's still far lower than the national median of $2,795, however.
Monongalia County sits along the Pennsylvania border in northern West Virginia. Its average effective property tax rate is 0.57%, which ranks in the bottom half of the state.
Situated along the Ohio River in the western region of the state, Cabell County has property taxes higher than the state average. Homeowners in the county pay a median annual property tax of $862, which is more than the state median.
With a population of more than 83,000, Wood County is the fifth-largest county in West Virginia. The average effective tax rate in Wood County is 0.70%. The median home value in the county is $126,300 and the median property tax bill that residents here pay is $884.
Raleigh County is located in southern West Virginia. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the median home value in the county is $110,600, about 40% of the national median.
Because of this, homeowners in the county generally pay low annual property taxes. The median annual property tax payment in Raleigh County is $739, and the average effective rate is 0.67%.
Harrison County is the seventh-most populous county in West Virginia. It is named for Benjamin Harrison V, a former West Virginia governor and father of William Henry Harrison, the ninth U.S. president. Property taxes in Harrison County are slightly higher than the state average. The county’s average effective property tax rate is 0.63%.
The median property tax paid by homeowners in this southern West Virginia County is a mere $500 per year. That gives the county a 0.50% average effective tax rate, which is a bit below the statewide average.
Marion County is located southwest of Morgantown, in northern West Virginia. It has the second-highest average property tax rate of any county in the state. The average effective property tax rate in Marion County is 0.66%. At that rate, a homeowner with a home worth $100,000 would pay $660 annually in property taxes.
While the average effective property tax rate of 0.59% in Putnam County is slightly above the state average, property taxes paid are higher. That’s because the typical home in Putnam County is worth more than the average home in the entire state. The county’s median home value is $175,700, compared with the state median of $143,200.