Our research on cities and communities cuts across several Urban Institute specialties—housing trends, crime prevention, economic development, arts and culture, and more.
Our urban studies define much of our history, from evaluations of community development corporations in poor neighborhoods to road-tested ideas for rebuilding New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, to more recent projects helping policymakers monitor communities' progress. We also work closely with local groups to grasp and address the Washington, D.C., area's challenges. Read more.
This Tax Fact examines the property tax burden as a share of home value in the United States. Most counties have property tax burdens between 0.5 and 1.5 percent of home value. As a share of home values, counties in the Northeast, parts of the Midwest, and Texas tend to have higher property taxes relative to other counties.
The New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) program encourages investment in low-income areas by providing tax credits to private investors through certified Community Development Entities (CDEs) that invest in businesses and real estate projects for economic and community development purposes.
This first formal evaluation of the NMTC program is national and program-wide in scope. Information collection was limited to projects initiated as of December 2007. In its early years, the NMTC program operated as intended-encouraging investments in low-income areas for a diverse range of projects. The most prevalent results were provision of advantageous financing, real estate development, additions to local tax bases, and job creation or retention. NMTC projects also added to or expanded community amenities, services, and facilities and supported small businesses and organizations. Outputs and outcomes varied by project, as did the need for a public subsidy and project viability.
This brief presents an overview of residential property taxes. The brief considers recent trends in aggregate property tax revenues and examines the property tax at the county level. Property taxes are an important source of revenue for local governments, though effective property tax rates vary substantially by state and region. The counties with the highest property tax burdens tend to be in New York and New Jersey, while the counties with the lowest property tax burdens are located in Alabama and Louisiana. Most counties levy property taxes that are around $1,000 per homeowner and below 1 percent of house value.
Federal, state, and local governments provide resources to nonprofits to deliver services on their behalf, and the main vehicles for this relationship are government contracts and grants. Contracts and grants processes present challenges, and governments and nonprofits - and ultimately their shared constituency - stand to gain by working together to improve the system. This brief describes how community-based organizations and a local government have come together to begin streamlining the process. Government representatives and nonprofit leaders in Montgomery County, Maryland, were interviewed to get a better understanding of contracting issues from both perspectives as well as solutions formulated by those involved.
Las Vegas, Nevada saw the highest levels of foreclosure and price collapse of any American metro, prompting a wave of distressed real estate investor buying that has dominated the area market since 2009. This paper presents a case study of the activities and characteristics of these investors drawing upon both quantitative analysis and interviews with knowledgeable informants. This is one of four case studies that explore the behavior of distressed real estate investors since the collapse of the housing bubble and the onset of the mortgage crisis, and their impact on real estate market and community conditions.