Tool | October 2016

State-by-State Guide to Taxes on Retirees

Our comprehensive guide to taxes on retirement income, property and purchases, as well as special tax breaks for seniors, in every state.


Add to State Compare List | View List
(0) selected | Compare up to 5

The Bottom Line
Map of Minnesota

Least Tax-Friendly

One of Kiplinger's top ten least tax-friendly states for retirees, the North Star State offers cold comfort on the tax front to retirees. Social Security income is taxed to the same extent as it is on your federal return. Most pensions are taxable, though a new tax break makes military pensions exempt starting in 2016. Income tax rates and the sales tax rate are high.

State Sales Tax

6.875% state levy. Localities can add as much as 1.5%, with an average combined rate of 7.27%, according to the Tax Foundation. Most clothing and footwear are exempt.

Income Tax Range

Low: 5.35% (on less than $25,180 of taxable income for single filers and on less than $36,820 for joint filers)

High: 9.85% (on more than $155,650 of taxable income for single filers and on more than $259,420 for joint filers)

Social Security

Social Security income is taxed by Minnesota to the same extent as it is on your federal return.

Exemptions for Other Retirement Income

Railroad Retirement benefits are not taxed by Minnesota. Most pensions, including federal pensions, are taxable by Minnesota; thanks to a new tax break, military pensions are exempt starting in 2016. Taxpayers 65 and older may exempt up to $9,000 for single filers and up to $18,000 for joint filers as of 2014 if their income falls under certain limits.


Qualifies for exemption.

401(k)s and Other Defined-Contribution Employer Retirement Plans

Qualifies for exemption.

Private Pensions

Qualifies for exemption.

Public Pensions

Qualifies for exemption.

Property Taxes

Minnesota homeowners may use the Homestead Market Value Exclusion to reduce the amount subject to taxation. The amount of the exclusion is $30,400, minus 9% of the home's value greater than $76,000. For a homestead valued at $413,800 or more, there is no exclusion.

The Homestead Credit Refund provides property tax relief directly to eligible homeowners whose property taxes are high relative to their incomes. The maximum refund is $2,620.

A state-paid refund provides property tax relief directly to eligible renters whose rents are high relative to their incomes. The maximum renter's refund is $2,030.

Homeowners whose 2015 property tax bill jumps by more than 12% from 2014 may claim a refund of 60% of the amount over the 12% increase. The maximum refund is $1,000.

The Market Value Exclusion for Disabled Veterans allows qualifying disabled veterans, their caregivers and surviving spouses to exclude as much as $300,000 in home value from taxation.

The median property tax on Minnesota's median home value of $188,300 is $2,148.

Tax breaks for seniors: The Senior Citizen Property Tax Deferral Program allows people age 65 or older, whose household income is $60,000 or less, to defer a portion of the property tax on their home. The program limits the maximum amount of property tax to 3% of total household income. The deferred tax is paid by the state to the county. Interest, at an annually adjusted rate not to exceed 5%, will be charged on this loan, and a lien will attach to your property.

Inheritance and Estate Taxes

Minnesota has no inheritance tax. But it does have an estate tax, with an exclusion of $1.6 million in 2016, and increasing gradually to $2 million in 2018. The maximum estate tax rate is 16%.