Florida Real Estate Taxes

Ad Valorem Taxes

An ad valorem tax (Latin for "according to value") is a tax based on the value of real estate or personal property. Florida Statutes 193.011 outlines eight factors that the property appraiser must consider in arriving at the “fair market value” that include the three traditional approaches to value. Each property is re-assessed annually and has to be inspected at least once every three years. In the State of Florida, real estate is assessed at 100% of the property appraiser’s estimate of “fair market value”. However, in reality, assessments are typically somewhat lower than actual market values in order to account for the cost of sale and purchase as outlined in the Florida Statutes 193.011 as factors one and eight.

Exemptions

There are several exemptions available to property owners (i.e. homestead exemptions, widow or widower exemptions, totally and permanently disabled exemptions, blind exemption, quadriplegic exemption, veteran exemptions, etc.). Florida Amendment One, also known as the "Portability of Save Our Homes" Amendment, was a constitutional amendment on the on the January 29, 2008 election ballot in Florida that was approved. The original “Save Our Homes” Amendment was passed in 1992 and took place in 1995. That measure put an annual cap of 3 percent on increases in assessed home values for property taxes. However, a loophole in the Save Our Homes Amendment lost the property tax cap for Floridians who move to a new home. This “portability” measure closed that loophole. With respect to homestead property, this revision: (1) increases the homestead exemption except for school district taxes and (2) allows homestead property owners to transfer up to $500,000 of their Save-Our-Homes benefits to their next homestead. With respect to nonhomestead property, this revision (3) provides a $25,000 exemption for tangible personal property and (4) limits assessment increases for specified nonhomestead real property except for school district taxes.[1] Any widow or widower who is a Florida resident may claim a $500 exemption. A Florida resident who is totally and permanently disabled may qualify for a $500 exemption. A Florida resident who is blind may qualify for a $500 exemption. Real estate used and owned as a homestead by a quadriplegic, less any portion used for commercial purposes, is exempt from all ad valorem taxation.

Non-Ad Valorem Assessments

Non-Ad Valorem Assessments are taxes that are not based on value. Some examples include storm water, solid waste, and CDD (Community Development District) fees. Taxes are assessed as of January 1 of each year and are normally due and payable on November 1 of that year (a 4% discount is applied) and pay the taxes before April 1 of the following year. Taxes and non-ad valorem assessments become delinquent April 1 at which time 3% interest and advertising costs are added.


[1] NO. 1 CONSTITUTIONAL REVISION ARTICLE VII, SECTIONS 3, 4, AND 6 ARTICLE XII, SECTION 27

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