10 Most Tax-Friendly States for Middle-Class Families

If a move from one state to another is in your future, you could save big bucks by relocating to one of these states where the tax bite is light for middle-class families.

cut-out family and house on a map of the United States
(Image credit: Getty Images)

If you're one of the millions of American families planning a move from one state to another, make sure you check the overall cost of living in your new state before packing your bags – including the impact of state and local taxes on middle-class families. Naturally, it would be nice to live in one of the lowest tax states (perhaps even a state with no income tax). But how can you tell the best states for taxes from the worst?

As our State-by-State Guide to Taxes on Middle-Class Families shows, the overall state tax burden for the average American family varies widely — and the difference between living in a high-tax state vs. a low-tax state can be thousands of dollars each year, depending on your family's tax situation. To help you compare the expected tax bite on ordinary Americans in all 50 states and the District of Columbia, we estimated the overall income, sales, and property tax burden in each state for a hypothetical married couple with two children, combined wages of $77,000, and $3,000 of other income.

Based on our findings, we put together the following list of the 10 most tax-friendly states for middle-class families (the most-friendly state is listed at the end). If you're moving to one of these states, there's a good chance your overall state taxes will go down after the move.

[Get a free issue of The Kiplinger Tax Letter (opens in new tab), with timely tax advice and guidance to help  protect your hard-earned wealth as the tax laws change. No information is required from you to get your free copy.]

A complete description of our ranking methodology and sources of information is at the end of this article.

David Muhlbaum
Senior Online Editor, Kiplinger.com

In his current role as Senior Online Editor, David edits and writes a wide range of content for Kiplinger.com. With more than 20 years of experience with Kiplinger, he has worked on and written for a range of its publications, including The Kiplinger Letter and Kiplinger’s Personal Finance magazine. He is a co-host of Your Money's Worth, Kiplinger's podcast and has helped develop the Economic Forecasts feature.