Understanding Your Property Tax Bill

Here is a typical Vermont property tax bill. The format varies from town to town, so your bill may not look exactly like this sample. The Vermont Department of Taxes uses data and terms common to all property tax bills. Our intent is to show where requested information may be found.

Section 1

  1. A town may use “Account Number” or “Parcel ID” to identify the billing account.
  2. Property description, if shown
  3. Current owner’s mailing address or owner by deed. Ownership should be current as of April 1. If not, notify the municipality.
  4. Notice to forward the tax bill to the new owner(s) if the property is transferred after bill is received
  5. The Housesite Tax Information box contents are used to calculate any state payments that are adjusted for income. The information is reportable on certain state tax forms, e.g. the IN-111 Income Tax Return, HS-122 Homestead Declaration, HI-144 Property Tax Credit Claim, and LC-142 Landlord Certificate. The 11-digit SPAN and the three-digit School Code are commonly required by the Department of Taxes.

Property Tax Rates

  • Municipal Tax Rates: The municipal legislative body (most often with the advice of the treasurer) sets the tax rate or rates needed to raise money for municipality highway and general fund expenses. The municipal rate is levied against the municipal grand list.
  • Education Tax Rates: A homestead education tax rate and a nonresidential education tax rate are set annually by the commissioner of taxes. The education tax rates are to be levied against all homestead and nonresidential parcels on the education grand list

About the Education Tax Rates

There are two education tax rates: homestead and nonhomestead. Bills may show one or both rates. If you filed a Homestead Declaration (HS-122) this year and have no business or rental use, your bill will show only the homestead education rate. If you filed the HS-122 and you have business and/or rental use, your bill should show both the homestead and nonhomestead rates based on the relative percentage of homestead and business or rental use.

If the property is not your primary residence, you cannot declare it as your homestead. Your bill will show only the nonhomestead rate.

Learn more about how the education tax rates are set.

Section 2

  1. Total property value, as determined by local assessing officials. If you are entitled to a partial tax exemption of any kind, this deduction will appear here. See Notes on Exemptions, below.
  2. Homestead and nonhomestead assessed values are portions of the full assessed value. If you filed an HS-122 and you have business and/or rental use, your assessment will be split. Your business and/or rental use will show as nonhomestead.
  3. Local tax rates, voted on at town meeting at controlled locally, and exemptions.
  4. Education tax information: homestead and/or nonhomestead tax rates for the statewide education property tax
  5. Your total combined state and local property taxes, before any adjustments
  6. The State payment is the Property Tax Credit. It reduces the amount of tax owed.
  7. Your total municipal (local) property tax liability
  8. Installment due dates and payment stubs (not shown) vary from town to town. Towns send out tax bills only once a year, but may have annual, semi-annual, or quarterly payment due dates

Back of the Property Tax Bill

Here is an example of the printed language from the back of the property tax bill.

See Example

Notes on Exemptions

Contract exemptions are for special circumstances where a municipality reduces the value on a portion of property being used for a public purpose, or where other exemptions exist by state law. Some municipalities also have community-specific stabilization agreements.

The Veterans Property Exemption is available if you meet the criteria, by applying to the Vermont Office of Veterans Affairs. There is also a Land Use Exemption, also known as Current Use. Learn more about the Current Use Program.

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