Tax Data Series

Real Property

Real Estate Taxes:
Real Property Conveyance (Transfer) Fees:
Amounts Collected, by County, Calendar Year 2005

Ohio Revised Code Section 319.54(F)(3) establishes a mandatory transfer fee on the conveyance of real property. The fee is one dollar per thousand dollars of value of real property transferred. In addition, Ohio Revised Code Section 322.02 allows the board of county commissioners of each county to levy a permissive real property transfer fee of up to three dollars per thousand dollars of value of real property transferred. In simple terms, both the mandatory fee and the permissive county fee (a combined maximum of 4 mills) apply to the selling price of real estate at the time of sale. The revenue from both the mandatory fee and the permissive fee is deposited in the general fund of the county--none of the revenue goes to the state.

In 2005, conveyance fees generated $152.1 million: $52.0 million mandatory fees and $100.1 million from the permissive fees. The number of conveyances by county on which the mandatory transfer fees were collected ranged from 310 in Vinton County to 34,197 in Franklin County. The total mandatory transfer fees collected by each county ranged from $17,693 in Vinton County to $7.2 million in Franklin County. The average mandatory transfer fee collected by each county ranged from $40.87 in Meigs County to $427.62 in Athens County*, with a statewide average of $142.28. The average total transfer fee, including both mandatory and permissive fees, collected by each county ranged from $50.77 in Morgan County to $1,710.47 in Athens County*, with a statewide average of $416.45. For those counties that charge both the mandatory and permissive fees, the total collected (both mandatory fee and permissive fee) ranged from $58,547 in Monroe County to $21.0 million in Cuyahoga County.

Ohio Revised Code Section 319.54(F)(3) exempts certain conveyances from the mandatory transfer fee. During 2005, a total of 237,671 (41.5 percent of the total) transfer fee statements filed with the county auditors were exempted from the fee. The lowest percentage exempted was in Warren County with 28.1 percent exempted. Wyandot County, with 67.1 percent, had the highest percentage exempted.

Table PC-1 shows the revenues collected by each county from both the mandatory transfer fee and the permissive real property transfer fee. The data presented in the table were compiled from a survey of county auditors conducted by the Ohio Department of Taxation.

* Several high value properties were sold in Athens County in 2005, resulting in a very high average fee.