by Michael H. Wasserman
Cook County property owners can now see their 2014 1st Installment property tax bills online at the County Treasurer's web site. Tax bills are due on or before March 3, 2015. The first installment bill is not a predictor of what the final annual tax bill will look like. This is merely 55% of last years bill and is simply an estimate of what the final levy may look like.
IF YOU ESCROW FOR TAXES WITH YOUR LENDER:Property tax payers who escrow for taxes with their lender need not take any action - the lender is supposed to pay for you. (OK, maybe you should check to make sure that your lender actually does pays the bill.).
IF YOU PAY YOUR OWN TAXES:Make sure that you pay on time! The County charges 18% per anum interest on delinquent taxes (1.5% per month). You can pay any number of ways, including -
- Payment the County directly, in person at the Treasurer's Offices or by mail
- at any local (Illinois) Chase Bank branch location
- at other select Community Banks
- online via credit card
- online via ACH debit (e-check)
note that there is a $1 fee for ACH payments. There are substantial fees for paying by credit card. Details here.
IF YOU ARE CLOSING ON THE SALE OF COOK COUNTY PROPERTY SOON
Your Buyer, his or her lender, and the title insurance company will all want to either see proof that this bill has been paid, or that you are giving proper credit for this tax bill to the Buyer.
If you are paying your own taxes, be sure to send proof of payment to your attorney, ASAP so that you do not have to escrow funds with the title company until it can confirm the payment was made
If your lender pays your tax bills, be sure to check with them too. The last thing you will want is to have to pay the taxes at closing AND find out your lender ALSO paid the same bill for you.