Mar 11

In a previous post on foreclosures in Milwaukee I mentioned that rental owners spend $90 – 120 million per year in repairs and renovations, to which a reader expands upon by asking what do rental owners pay in property taxes per year.  I thought that an interesting and relevant question so we dug into it a bit.

Rental property owners in Milwaukee pay about $266 million per year in property taxes, another $26 million or so in special assessments, which could be everything from fire inspections to alley and sidewalk repairs to so called reinspection fees. The includes owner occupied properties with a rental unit, as they are landlords as well.

As a side note I was surprised to see how many properties that were clearly investor owned, the owner address was not the same as the property address or the owner is a LLC or corp,  were listed by the city as owner occupied.

Rental owners also pay somewhere around $32 million a year in sewer and water plus associated fees.  This number is much harder to arrive at and may be higher than this. I simply took the gross amount and divided it by number of dwelling units.

One very interesting factoid that I stumbled across while searching for the answer is the number of properties actually taken by the city through tax foreclosure was 745 in 2012, a very significant 60% increase over the 464 taken in 2011.  The treasurer is budgeting even a slightly greater number for 2013.  1152 properties entered the city tax foreclosure pipeline in 2012.  Source: Milwaukee City Treasurer Dept Metrics

Per the U.S. Census around 54.5% of all dwelling units in the city are rentals.  City assessment data puts that number higher, around 64%. The city publicly claims higher owner occupancy as they report the percentage of residential parcels rather than units that are owner occupied.  The census puts vacant housing units at 11.3% with rental vacancies at 4.2% 302,000 people in Milwaukee are tenants. Source: U.S. Census Fact Finder

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