The City of Boston does not make it easy to pay your Real Estate Taxes online.
I followed the link from the back page of my Real Estate Tax bill, and was then placed in a maze of web pages that all looked alike. It took me three pages to get to a tax payment screen, and then I had a hard time entering my Parcel ID. Poor documentation on the data entry screen.
When it came time to pay, the only option was to copy down hte information from my checking account. The City of Boston should look into accepting more payment options like Credit Cards and PayPal.
Join me now on a trip through the current state of poor user interface on the City of Boston website. We probably spent thousands to develop this from city hall worker specifications.
The only web address on the Tax Bill is :
If you go to that page, you can't pay your taxes from it.
It's the "Taxpayer Referral and Assistance Center"
What do you click on to pay your taxes?
This is where you can pay your City of Boston Tax Bill:
Well, not yet. You still have to click on "Property Tax"
This is the City of Boston Real Estate Tax payment page:
This Form asks for a "Parcel ID (10-digit number)"
But on the Tax Bill you have:
WARD (2 digits)
PARCEL NO. ( 8 digits with an embedded "-" ).
The form should ask for you to enter your Ward AND Parcel ID.
It should also programatically remove the "-" is people enter it.
Note: The helpful PARCEL ID description is no where near the data entry field.
What to do?
Put this URL on the Real Estate tax bill: www.cityofboston.gov/realestate/
Then you end up on the payment screen for Real Estate Taxes.
Clarify the data entry area for WARD and PARCEL and have the computer allow the "-". Just programatically strip it out.
Allow additional forms of payment.
Allow sign up for automatic deductions from checking or credit cards so you don't have to manually pay. ( The City of Boston Water Department should add this feature too )