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Old 06-09-2018, 05:54 AM
 
1,153 posts, read 720,710 times
Reputation: 4287

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Out of all the states in the US I think I would enjoy Iowa's 4-season climate the best. Jobs seems to be solid, stable, and middle class. The people in Iowa are known for their friendliness and hospitality.

But....how do you justify having higher income taxes than even states like Maryland, Illinois, New York or New Jersey!?
Iowa
0.36%$0
0.72%>$1,598
2.43%>$3,196
4.50%>$6,392
6.12%>$14,382
6.48%>$23,970
6.80%>$31,960
7.92%>$47,940
8.98%>$71,910

So take a guy like me who makes about $55k per year and will probably make closer to $60k this year and likely over that next year. You mean to tell me that I'm paying nearly 8% for my top rate?

Now I understand that would only be the highest bracket, but because that would only be the highest ¼ or so of my income the average would bump down a bit, but still I would find myself paying in the 6½ percent range overall.

And I hear that property taxes in Iowa aren't something to balk at either. Looking on Zillow (perhaps not the best source, but they seem to be consistant) it seems that you average home in Des Moines has about a 5k property tax bill, but even here in Maryland similar homes would only have to pay 2-2.5k depending on county.

Here's a reasonable example: https://www.zillow.com/homes/for_sal...33_rect/10_zm/
255k asking price, but it's "only" assessed at 200k (I'm assessed somewhat lower than market value where I am too)....with an annual property tax bill of 4.7k. Ouch!!!

Where does it all go? And why does the beautiful midwest tax so much? If I want to move out to the midwest why wouldn't I just skip on over to Sioux Falls even though places like Des Moines, or Omaha in Nebraska seem like great options other than for the taxes?
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Old 06-09-2018, 08:00 AM
 
27 posts, read 28,184 times
Reputation: 23
I'm with you.

Income taxes: yes, they are high. No, I don't know where they go. The governor just signed a tax reform bill that should lower rates and end federal deductibility (you deduct federal taxes paid but add to income federal refunds received - it's a pin in the you-know-what) - but I don't think it takes effect immediately.

Property taxes: insane, and again, I don't know where they go. We moved to Iowa from Virginia. We pay more than double the property tax on a similarly assessed house. The county, city, and school district all levy separate taxes - and there are one or two others on our bill.

Sales tax: 6% minimum, some higher with local rates.

Also, the difference in cost of living - especially housing - isn't what you might think.
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Old 06-09-2018, 09:05 AM
 
162 posts, read 279,120 times
Reputation: 203
I think property taxes are the biggest problem. The higher property taxes in cities are partially responsible for more people building new houses in suburbs. And then those people in the suburbs go to those cities, using roads and other amenities but not paying for them. I don't have a clue how to solve the problem, but hopefully someone does.
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Old 06-10-2018, 04:45 PM
 
49 posts, read 33,240 times
Reputation: 84
Quote:
Originally Posted by InchingWest View Post
Out of all the states in the US I think I would enjoy Iowa's 4-season climate the best. Jobs seems to be solid, stable, and middle class. The people in Iowa are known for their friendliness and hospitality.

But....how do you justify having higher income taxes than even states like Maryland, Illinois, New York or New Jersey!?
Iowa
0.36%$0
0.72%>$1,598
2.43%>$3,196
4.50%>$6,392
6.12%>$14,382
6.48%>$23,970
6.80%>$31,960
7.92%>$47,940
8.98%>$71,910

So take a guy like me who makes about $55k per year and will probably make closer to $60k this year and likely over that next year. You mean to tell me that I'm paying nearly 8% for my top rate?

Now I understand that would only be the highest bracket, but because that would only be the highest ¼ or so of my income the average would bump down a bit, but still I would find myself paying in the 6½ percent range overall.

And I hear that property taxes in Iowa aren't something to balk at either. Looking on Zillow (perhaps not the best source, but they seem to be consistant) it seems that you average home in Des Moines has about a 5k property tax bill, but even here in Maryland similar homes would only have to pay 2-2.5k depending on county.

Here's a reasonable example: https://www.zillow.com/homes/for_sal...33_rect/10_zm/
255k asking price, but it's "only" assessed at 200k (I'm assessed somewhat lower than market value where I am too)....with an annual property tax bill of 4.7k. Ouch!!!

Where does it all go? And why does the beautiful midwest tax so much? If I want to move out to the midwest why wouldn't I just skip on over to Sioux Falls even though places like Des Moines, or Omaha in Nebraska seem like great options other than for the taxes?
If you want the beauty of Iowa without the taxes then consider Indiana. Low taxes, similar landscape and feel of Iowa and unlike Iowa we have access to Lake Michigan and the beautiful beaches all around it.
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Old 06-10-2018, 06:33 PM
 
Location: Council Bluffs, Iowa
318 posts, read 459,094 times
Reputation: 484
My son lives in Seattle. Lower taxes, but everything else is sky high!!! Real estate is so much lower here, so even at a higher rate, you are still ahead! The money has to come from somewhere!!!
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Old 06-10-2018, 06:58 PM
 
459 posts, read 342,755 times
Reputation: 592
Parts of Iowa are nice, but the midwest is dead. Job after job, company after company has left.
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Old 06-11-2018, 07:28 AM
 
Location: Tennessee
27,605 posts, read 20,591,792 times
Reputation: 33431
I lived in Iowa for a year back in 2012. I also worked in Virginia/lived in Tennessee, but made less money.

I went from the low $30k range in Virginia to low-mid $40k in Des Moines. I took home, maybe, $200 more per pp. Virginia has lower sales, income, and property taxes, basically across the board.

Still, some of my costs were much lower. Auto insurance was about half of what it was in Tennessee. Groceries were much cheaper. Virtually anything sold at retail was cheaper. Home prices in the suburbs of Des Moines compared to the nice areas of where I am in northeast TN are a toss-up. Unlike this part of Tennessee/Virginia, the job market is excellent, the schools are pretty much uniformly good, and crime is low.

Keep in mind that those income tax rates are on the marginal dollar, but the 6% bracket kicks in at a very low amount of income. It's pretty brutal.

I lived in Indiana for three years, and while it's not a "low tax state," it is much lower tax than Iowa. I'm back in Tennessee, and it has by far the most favorable tax situation of anywhere I've lived. I get adequate services here and it's mind-boggling to me where all the tax dollars in Iowa go.
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Old 06-11-2018, 07:35 AM
 
Location: Des Moines Metro
5,105 posts, read 6,637,967 times
Reputation: 9679
Everywhere has trade-offs.

I expect the tax problems in Iowa to improve somewhat over the next five years. People at the grass roots are getting fed up and organizing. We also have a new crop of people willing to run for office to change the status quo. Don't write off Iowa, yet.
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Old 06-11-2018, 03:24 PM
 
6,056 posts, read 5,651,486 times
Reputation: 18464
Taxes pay for services.

Iowa has excellent public schools and universities. Indiana (I grew up there), Tennessee, and other low tax states don't have excellent schools. Are Iowa teachers protesting their low wages and insufficient funding for their schools? No.

Those who are working to lower taxes in Iowa come from the party that has a vested interest in making sure that there are enough poorly educated people easily manipulated into voting against their own interests in order to keep the 1% rolling in the dough.
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Old 06-12-2018, 12:03 AM
 
Location: Western Asia
3,186 posts, read 1,636,872 times
Reputation: 2532
Quote:
Originally Posted by InchingWest View Post
Out of all the states in the US I think I would enjoy Iowa's 4-season climate the best. Jobs seems to be solid, stable, and middle class. The people in Iowa are known for their friendliness and hospitality.

But....how do you justify having higher income taxes than even states like Maryland, Illinois, New York or New Jersey!?
Iowa
0.36%$0
0.72%>$1,598
2.43%>$3,196
4.50%>$6,392
6.12%>$14,382
6.48%>$23,970
6.80%>$31,960
7.92%>$47,940
8.98%>$71,910

So take a guy like me who makes about $55k per year and will probably make closer to $60k this year and likely over that next year. You mean to tell me that I'm paying nearly 8% for my top rate?

Now I understand that would only be the highest bracket, but because that would only be the highest ¼ or so of my income the average would bump down a bit, but still I would find myself paying in the 6½ percent range overall.

And I hear that property taxes in Iowa aren't something to balk at either. Looking on Zillow (perhaps not the best source, but they seem to be consistant) it seems that you average home in Des Moines has about a 5k property tax bill, but even here in Maryland similar homes would only have to pay 2-2.5k depending on county.

Here's a reasonable example: https://www.zillow.com/homes/for_sal...33_rect/10_zm/
255k asking price, but it's "only" assessed at 200k (I'm assessed somewhat lower than market value where I am too)....with an annual property tax bill of 4.7k. Ouch!!!

Where does it all go? And why does the beautiful midwest tax so much? If I want to move out to the midwest why wouldn't I just skip on over to Sioux Falls even though places like Des Moines, or Omaha in Nebraska seem like great options other than for the taxes?
Iowa looks beautiful


I'm sure it's a great and fabulous state but I've been through that state and I wouldn't describe it like OP but beauty is always in the eye of the beholder.
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