BRIDGEPORT - Gov. Dannel Malloy's plan to close the state's budget shortfall this year could lead to a spike in property taxes in southwestern Connecticut, according to local realtors.

The governor's administration is faced with an almost billion-dollar gap in the state budget. Malloy wants to cut payments to cities and towns, a plan that has local realtors worried for the housing market.

Charles Scott, of Tri-State Realty, says homeowners in areas like Bridgeport already pay some of the highest property taxes in the state. He says taxes may get worse under the governor's proposal. Scott and other realtors say if property taxes go up, it will play a role in whether people choose to purchase a home in Connecticut.

Malloy says his administration has no choice but to make the cuts. "Our expectations need to change," says Malloy. "We cannot afford to fund everything as we have in the past."

Experts say that houses are currently selling, but often at lower prices. They say part of the reason is due to rising taxes.