Polk County, WI Property Tax

The Polk County property tax rate is 1.56%, making property taxes in this county lower than the state average.
Written by Katherine Duffy
Reviewed by Melanie Reiff
The average property tax rate in Polk County, Wisconsin, is 1.56%, so Polk County residents pay an average of $2,649 in property taxes annually. 
Paying your annual property tax bill is a routine financial responsibility that comes with the luxury of owning a home in the US. While every homeowner across the country must pay property taxes each year, different tax rates and payment processes from county to county can make it difficult to determine how much you’ll owe and how to pay.
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. You’ll learn what Polk County uses your property taxes for, when your taxes are due, and how to pay them. 

Property tax 101

Here's a brief overview of what you need to know about paying property taxes:
  • You’ll pay property taxes on real property you own such as your private home, retail shops, office buildings, vacant land, etc. 
  • Your county’s tax assessor decides on your specific property tax rate based on your property’s market value and your local tax rate
  • Property taxes aren’t fixed, which means these taxes change depending on market conditions and your county’s local budgets

What is the property tax rate in Polk County? 

Polk County’s average tax rate is 1.56% of a property’s assessed market value, which is below Wisconsin’s average property tax rate of 1.76%. You can expect to pay around $2,649 in property taxes per year based on the Polk County average. 

How Polk County property taxes are determined 

In Polk County, property taxes apply to most real estate within the county’s taxing districts. These districts operate at the county, school district, and city levels.
Polk County’s local district boards assess public service costs and determine a budget for the following year. After that, each county district levies property taxes to cover its budget. Then, the
Polk County Treasurer
sets a property tax rate for each district to fulfill the levies. 
Your municipal assessor appraised the worth of your property based on its current market value and your home’s unique assets once tax rates are established. Based on Polk County’s average property tax rate, your property’s taxable value should be around 1.56% of the assessor’s valuation. 
You can appeal your property’s assessed value if you don’t agree with it. The first step is to contact your community’s
Board of Review (BOR)
to initiate your appeal request. The state of Wisconsin has provided a
detailed guide
on how to appeal your property assessment depending on what kind of community you live in. 
Polk County offers several tax exemptions to its homeowners, such as the
Buyer Lottery and Gaming Credit
and the Managed Forest Law Property list. Visit the
Polk County government website
to learn more about eligibility and how to apply. 

What do Polk County property taxes pay for? 

Polk County property taxes are used by the county’s taxing districts to pay for important public services that benefit the community. Depending  on where you live in Polk County, here are a few different services your property taxes help fund:
  • Road infrastructure 
  • Police and fire departments
  • Public safety 
  • Zoning and building safety
  • Public libraries and community centers
  • Primary and secondary school
  • Waste and recycling management
  • Public housing
  • Greenspace conservation and maintenance
The Wisconsin state government has published a comprehensive guide on paying property taxes, including what kinds of services your property taxes pay for. You can learn more about these services in their
2022 Guide for Property Owners

How to pay property taxes in Polk County 

Polk County property taxes are paid in two installments. The first installment is due on January 31, and the second installment is due on July 31. Taxes become delinquent if you miss either payment due date by five days, which means you’ll have to pay an accumulating interest rate of 1% per month
There are two convenient ways to pay your property taxes in Polk County:
  • Online: Pay your taxes online via Polk County’s
    online payment portal
    . You can use a debit card, credit card, or e-check to make your payment. There’s a convenience fee of 2.39% for credit card and debit card payments and $1.50 for e-check payments.
  • In person:Pay your taxes by debit, credit, or check by visiting the Treasurer’s office at this address: Polk County Government Center, 100 Polk County Plaza, Suite 150 Balsam Lake, WI 54810.

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If you fail to pay either property tax installment five days after the due date, your property taxes will become delinquent, and you’ll have to pay an interest rate of 1% each month on the unpaid amount.
Your property tax rate is determined by assessing your property’s value and which taxing districts apply to your property. If your neighbor’s taxes are different from yours, the value of your property is likely different, and your home may fall within certain tax districts that your neighbor’s home doesn’t.
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