Money

Here's how many Americans think their taxes are 'about right' as opposed to 'too high'

Americans are less likely today than at any point since 2012 to say they pay too much in federal income taxes, according to a Gallup poll conducted early this month. The poll surveyed more than 1,000 adults in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

Just 45 percent of respondents believe their taxes are too high, according to the findings, which is down from 51 percent last year. By contrast, 48 percent say their taxes are about right. "The 45 percent saying today that their taxes are too high," Gallup reports, "essentially ties 1961, 2009 and 2012 as the lowest in Gallup's trend, all years when 46 percent of Americans said their taxes are too high."

Still, the amount you pay in taxes can vary wildly based on where you live. Residents in West Virginia, for example, pay the lowest in taxes of about $6,800 per year. At the other extreme, those who live in New Jersey pay the highest with rates close to $20,000 per year.

To find out which states pay the lowest taxes, financial website GOBankingRates conducted a survey that honed in on four categories: income, property, sales and gas taxes. Income tax bills included both state and federal taxes based on 2016 U.S. Census Bureau data.

"After determining what the average resident of that state would wind up paying for each over the course of the year," GOBankingRates says, "the states were ranked based on their residents' estimated tax bills."

Here are the five states residents pay the lowest taxes, overall:

West Virginia

Estimated total taxes paid: $6,837.16

Montana

Estimated total taxes paid: $7,034.50

Mississippi

Estimated total taxes paid: $7,086.42

Kentucky

Estimated total taxes paid: $7,536.60

Arkansas

Estimated total taxes paid: $7,858.01

While residents in the above states pay lower taxes compared to those in places like New Jersey, there are still "plenty of Americans are facing a significant tax burden," GOBankingRates says. For residents in 26 states and in D.C., the combination of state and federal taxes take at least one in five dollars they earn over the course of the year.

So what accounts for the overall decline in Americans' belief that their taxes are too high? Gallup says it mostly results from fewer Republicans holding that view: 45 percent of Republicans say their taxes are too high, down from 62 percent a year ago, while "there has been no meaningful change in the percentages of independents and Democrats saying their taxes are too high, at 49 percent and 39 percent, respectively."

Gallup adds that "a majority, 52 percent, disapprove" of the 2017 GOP tax bill.

For a breakdown of how much Americans pay in federal, state and property taxes, click here.

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Video by Mary Stevens