CHICAGO (CBS) — Residents in Cook County are getting an eyeful as they open their property tax bill. Especially those living in Chicago.

Tables set up outside the Cook County Assessors Office have at least six people from the office answering questions on everything from how their own property values went up to how they can go about filing an appeal.

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(Credit: Cook County Assessors Office)

The taxable value in Chicago is up 12.5%. It’s mostly tied into increases from reassessment in Chicago.

(Credit: CBS)

While the average single family residential property tax bill in the northern and central parts of Chicago increased approximately 11%, single family homes on the South Side are more likely to see their tax bills remain flat or increase only slightly.

According to Cook County Deputy Assessor Scott Smith, the tax bills are a result of assessments by Joe Berrios, who was under fire for the property tax system he had set up. The current Cook County Assessor, Fritz Kaegi, released a report in June that maps out which areas have gone up and which property owners will pay more.

(Credit: CBS)


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For suburban residents there are few changes compared to last year.

Taxes fell flat for homeowners and up slightly for commercial properties. The total tax amount billed increased 1.2% in the north and northwest suburbs and 0.5% in the south and west suburbs.

(Credit: Cook County Assessor’s Office)

The Cook County Assessor will join the thousands who will be paying a lot in property taxes. Records show that in 2018, Kaegi paid $26,872.63 in property taxes on a home worth $727,710 at 403 N. Elmwood Ave. in Oak Park.

A resident of the Chicago’s Budlong Woods neighborhood said she has no problem paying more in taxes. She said she’s looking at a 25% increase in her property tax bill for a total of $1,979.20.

“We are happy to pay the property tax amount for the awesome public schools our four children have attended. We are also happy to pay the property tax to support the public library system,” said the resident, who did not want to be identified.

But Park Ridge resident Cathalyne Spina said she is very upset with what she saw with her latest tax bill.

“I contested mine. I had 210% increase. Still awaiting my results. When I went to the township office in May, the clerk at the desk told me it was the highest increase they had seen,” Spina said. “I am in Park Ridge in a 900 square foot condo. If the appeal is unsuccessful, I am looking at just under $9,000 a year for 900 square feet! I laughed for 20 minutes after I opened the bill. I still laugh every time I talk about it. It’s so ridiculous.”

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The second installment for the 2018 tax bill payments is due on August 1.

Tim McNicholas