City of Madison Logo
City of Madison Treasurer's Office
210 MLK, Jr. Blvd.,
Room 107, City-County Bldg.
Madison, WI 53703-3342

Phone: (608) 266-4771
WI Relay Service
Fax: (608) 266-4128
Email: Treasurer

Business Hours:
Monday through Friday,
8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

The Treasurer's Office is closed on the following days: Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year's Eve, New Year's Day, and Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

Payment is for the 2013 tax year only. Delinquent real estate taxes must be paid to the Dane County Treasurer’s Office, PO Box 1299, Madison, WI 53701 or online at their Real Estate Tax Payment site.

Q: What is the lottery credit and do I qualify for one?
A: Property owners can receive a lottery and gaming credit on their primary residence. The credit must be applied for. To be eligible to receive the credit you must complete an application form (see Wisconsin Dept of Revenue ). During the months of December and January, return the completed application to the city treasurer. All other times the application should be returned to the Dane County Treasurer. Please remember two restrictions:

  1. The property must have been your primary residence on January 1st, 2013
  2. You may only claim the lottery credit on one property—your primary residence.

The lottery credit is based on the school district in which you live and is applied to the amount of first installment due.

Q: What is the “First Dollar Credit”?
A: The First Dollar Credit was new with tax year 2008. Unlike the lottery credit, property owners who are eligible will receive the credit on their bill automatically without any forms to sign or applications to submit. To be eligible, the property (otherwise known as the "parcel") must have an improvement. If you have an amount listed in the box labeled "Ass'd Value Improvements" in the upper left part of your tax bill, you qualify for the credit. The amount of the credit will be the same for all parcels within the same school district as long as the value of the improvements meets a small threshold amount. For 2013 the amounts range between $71.15 and $88.67 (depending on school district). The credit is divided between the first installment, due January 31st, and the 2nd installment, due July 31st.

Q: Why is there a reference to a “drainage district” on my property tax bill?
A: A small number of properties (tax parcels) in the City of Madison are in drainage districts. As of 2008 if a parcel is within a drainage district, the city is required to indicate that on the tax bill. If your property is within a drainage district (this applies to less than 5% of the parcels in Madison), you will see a reference to that in the upper right portion of the tax bill. In addition to the name of the district, you will see a dollar sign ($) and a zero. In theory, property within a drainage district could be assessed for work done in that district. If that were the case, the dollar amount of the assessment would be listed. However, for 2013 there were no assessments (therefore, the "$0"). Drainage district work is usually done in rural areas. It is not anticipated that any parcels within the city of Madison will have a drainage assessment in the foreseeable future.

Q: How do I pay half of my Real Property Tax bill?
A: In the amount field, enter the amount you will be paying (either the first installment or the full payment). See Real Tax Bill sample.

Q: When will I get credited for paying my taxes?
A: You will be credited for paying your taxes online the moment you click the Confirm button after going through our online process.  Even though it might take 5 business days for your financial institution to process your transaction and send us your payment details, you will get credit for paying your taxes on the date and time that you click Confirm from our online payments site.  To verify this, please print the confirmation page or make sure your email address is entered correctly where requested so that you receive an email notification. Please keep in mind that it will take up to 5 business days to reflect your payment in our online property lookup.

Q: Can I use my credit card to pay my property taxes?
A: Yes. There is a convenience fee on all property tax credit card transactions. The convenience fee is 2.5% of the amount of the property tax payment. The City of Madison is required to collect and remit 100% of the property tax billed amounts to the taxing jurisdictions. Therefore, the fee for using this type of payment method is borne by the user.

Q: I'm paying by e-check. How long before I see the amount debited from my bank account?
A: In banking, e-checks are referred to as "ACHs". This is a bank-to-bank process that typically takes two to three business days to complete. Therefore, don't expect to see your payment withdrawn from your account immediately after you make the payment. However, if after three business days, you still haven't seen your account debited, please call the treasurer's office (266-4771). There have been rare instances where taxpayers have entered incorrect banking information and inadvertently debited someone else's account. When this happens, we need to try to correct the mistake as soon as possible.

Q: Why can't I login as a registered user with US Bank and pay my property tax bill?
A: There isn't a way to use your existing account to pay your tax bill.  We've had difficulty in the past with users forgetting their passwords and locking their accounts.  Given the time-sensitive nature of tax payments, we're trying to avoid this situation by not using registered accounts.  We apologize for the inconvenience.

Q: Where can I find my parcel number?
A: Your parcel number is located at the top of your tax bill or on your assessment notice. You can also look-up your parcel number on the Assessor's Property Lookup. Your parcel number is also available by contacting the Assessor’s Office at (608) 266-4531 (between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.) Monday through Friday.

NOTE: Enter only the portion of your parcel number after the 251. The initial 251 of your parcel number is our municipality code and will be entered automatically for you. Do not include dashes in the parcel number.

Q: Where do I pay delinquent real property taxes?
A: Delinquent real estate taxes are paid to the Dane County Treasurer’s Office, PO Box 1299, Madison, WI 53701. The telephone number is (608) 266-4151.

Q: How do I get a receipt?
A: For online payments, the confirmation page will be your receipt. You will also receive an e-mail message confirming payment if you supply your correct email address in the box indicating that you want an email confirmation. For your convenience, you can print a receipt directly from the "Tax Details" tab for your property on the Assessor's Property Lookup. You can also request a paid receipt by sending a self-addressed stamped envelope, and the top portion of your property tax bill or your parcel number to the City Treasurer’s Office, PO Box 2999, Madison, WI 53701. We will send a paid receipt to you.

Q: How do I change my mailing address?
A: Contact the City Assessor’s Office at (608) 266-4531 or email your change to assessor@cityofmadison.com

Q: How can I check to see if my mortgage company has paid my property taxes?
A: Property tax payments are posted each business day after 7:45 p.m on the Assessor's Property Lookup. Search for your property and then choose the “Tax Details” tab. Payment information is towards the bottom of the page.

Q: When is the last day to pay my real estate or personal property taxes?
A: The last day to pay real estate and personal property taxes is January 31, 2014. You can pay the first installment or a full payment. You should not wait until the last minute on January 31, 2014 to make an online payment. While the Internet is meant to be available 24 hours a day, the City of Madison cannot be held liable for your inability to make payments via the Internet by the due date. The City cannot accept online payments after midnight on January 31, 2014.

Q. Is there a “grace period” for late tax payments?
A. Yes. The grace period is defined as the first five business days after the due date. For the 2013 tax bills, that means the last day of the grace period will be February 7th, 2014. Payments may be made in person during business hours between February 1st and February 7th and will still be considered timely. The timeliness of mailed payments will be determined by the postmark. To be timely, the postmark must indicate a date no later than February 7th. Website payments are not accepted after January 31st.

Q: Can I pay taxes for non-City of Madison property?
A: No, the City only accepts City of Madison property tax payments.

Do you still have a question that was not answered in the above FAQs? Please call the City Treasurer's Office at (608) 266-4771.