Some Americans pay a lot more property tax than others

A home for sale is shown in White Plains, N.Y.
Craig Ruttle | Bloomberg | Getty Images
A home for sale is shown in White Plains, N.Y.

Paying property taxes, like cleaning the gutters, is a never-ending reality of homeownership. And factors, including location, can drastically alter how much you pay, according to Zillow.

The online real estate marketplace looked at the median property tax bills in different areas of the country, and found that residents in the New York tri-state area overwhelmingly pay the most in property taxes for single-family homes, according to the latest available data from 2013.

On the other end of the spectrum, homeowners in the some Southern and Midwestern states had a relatively low average tax bill.

Read More Where property taxes hit hardest

Highest Median Property Tax by County

County
Median taxes
Westchester, NY $13,842
Rockland, NY $10,550
Bergen, NJ $9,546
Essex, NJ $9,288
Nassau, NY $9,091
Passaic, NJ $8,978
Union, NJ $8,926
Morris, NJ $8,549
Hudson, NJ $8,407
Hunterdon, NJ $8,392

Property tax is a "fraction of the assessed value on people's homes," said Skylar Olsen, senior economist at Zillow. "The more expensive your property, the higher your tax bill," she said.

So that more than $13,600 gap between New York and Mississippi reflects not just tax rates, which Olsen said hover around 1 or 2 percent, but also the median value of the homes in that county, according to the tax assessor.

That's important because, put simply, you and the tax authorities may not agree on the true value of your home. Olsen said there may be room to challenge the value the assessor put on your house, based on similar homes in your area. "It's not set in stone," she said.

Read MoreHere's who's stuck with the biggest tax bills

Take a look at the high and low assessments of property taxes in the tables, or find your county based on Zillow's data, Olsen said. Then, call a realtor to get a feel for whether you're paying the right amount of tax for your area, and look into possible exemptions, she said.

Lowest Median Property Tax by County

County
Median taxes
Tunica, MS $216
Bibb, AL $228
Walker, AL $244
Blount, AL $344
Amelia, VA $358
Butler, PA $397
Lincoln, OK $402
Fayette, TN $410
Meriwether, GA $457
Saint Clair, AL $470

See the tables for a breakdown. Read the full report on Zillow's blog.