NEW YORK, NY — New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer has released a report detailing the alarming disparity in how property tax burdens have grown for working families. The new analysis found that over the last decade, New York City taxes have increased at triple the rate of incomes, making it hard for those with incomes less than $100,000 that own property to pay City taxes.
“Property taxes are rising too fast and incomes are rising too slowly – and it’s becoming harder than ever for already struggling New Yorkers to get ahead,” said Comptroller Stringer. “Rising property taxes are becoming a barrier to the middle class and we can’t afford to continue down this path. We need to give New Yorkers a break, and turn a regressive tax system into a fair and progressive one. We must explore common sense solutions and expand tax relief to level the playing field for working families.”
Property tax increases have had a devastating effect on the middle class. Households making less than $100,000 per year make up roughly half of all New York City property tax filers. This group experience the most significant burden. Households making less than $50,000 saw their property taxes increase by 98 percent and their median incomes drop by almost 1 percent since 2005. As a result, the property tax burden for these New Yorkers nearly doubled from 6.6 percent in 2005 to almost 13 percent in 2016. Households making between $50,000 and $100,000 saw their property taxes increase by 67 percent since 2005 as their median income grew by just 4.6 percent. Their burden grew from 3.4 percent of income in 2005 to 5.4 percent in 2016.
The burden of New York City’s property taxes is worsened by narrowly funded and restrictive relief opportunities. These programs fail to support middle-income New Yorkers. Comptroller Stringer is recommending increasing the number of New Yorkers eligible for tax relief by expanding benefits and deferment programs.