Cutting Wisconsin’s real estate transfer tax (Transfer Tax) by one-third would reduce the cost carried by Wisconsin property owners who pay the tax on the sale of real property.
When the Wisconsin Transfer Tax was first imposed on property owners in 1970, sellers were responsible to pay $1.00 for every $1,000 of property value transferred. At that time, the county and state split the funds received from the tax 50/50. In 1982, the tax was increased to its current rate of $3.00 per $1,000 of property value. Additionally, the percentages were changed so the state received 80% and the county received 20%.
The county Register of Deeds is responsible for collecting the tax. Under the current structure, the county keeps its 20% portion of the funds to provide for local services, while the state’s 80% goes into General Purpose Revenue (GPR) for the general benefit of the state.