What are the filing requirements for the Florida Homestead Exemption?
The Florida Homestead Exemption helps homeowners save money on their property taxes by reducing the assessed value of their property which in turn lowers the amount of property taxes.
However, timing and eligibility details are critical when qualifying for this exemption.
That’s why today’s video will break down how the Florida Homestead Exemption works, who can apply, and what benefits are available for those that are eligible.
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Florida Homestead Exemption Qualifying
Once the journey to purchase a home has been completed, property tax exemption benefits may be available. However, timing is critical in order to qualify and keep those potential savings from slipping away.
The Florida Homestead Exemption reduces the taxable value of the property and is a provision found within Article X, Section 4 of the Florida Constitution. Additional details can also be found within Article VII, Section 6.
The Florida Homestead Property Tax Exemption provides that each person who holds legal title to real estate as of January 1 and maintains the property as their primary residence (not a second home or investment property) may receive up to a $50,000 homestead exemption.
This is further explained by the Highlands County Property Appraiser as follows:
“Every person who has the legal or equitable title to real estate as of January 1, and maintains it as their permanent residence or as the residence of another legally or naturally dependent upon the owner may be entitled to up to $50,000 homestead exemption.”
“The first $25,000 applies to all property taxes, including school district taxes. The additional exemption up to $25,000, applies to the assessed value between $50,000 and $75,000 and only to non-school taxes.”
“In addition, assessed value increases on your homestead property will not exceed the lower of 3% per year, or average CPI, exclusive of any additions or renovations to the homestead.”
While we are using Highlands County as an example, if you are in another county please contact your local property appraiser to ask any questions and confirm all deadlines.
Provided you are eligible, a homestead exemption filing deadline is March 1 of the year for which the exemption will apply. If March 1 lands on a weekday or holiday or for any late filing questions, please contact your local property appraiser for any filing date confirmations.
Questions to be Prepared For
Furthermore, be prepared to answer the following types of questions:
- Whose name or names were on the title on January 1?
- What is your social security number and your spouse’s social security number?
- Were you or your dependent living in the dwelling on January 1?
- Do you claim residency in another county or state?
While these question examples were provided by the Florida Department of Revenue, the property appraiser may ask additional questions.
Also, if you have moved from a previous Florida homestead, you may be eligible to port your entire homestead of a portion of it through the Save our Homes Portability Transfer.
Other Florida Exemptions
In addition to the Florida Homestead exemption, here are other exemptions that a person may be eligible for in Florida:
- Active Duty Military and Veterans
- Tax benefits for persons 65 or older
- Additional exemptions are also available and here is the link for further research
A great resource for additional exemption questions is your local county property appraiser. Here is a link to the list of Florida County Property Appraiser offices.
Before we go, don’t forget to take advantage of our free Second Opinion Service “SOS.” It’s designed to help Realtors and Buyers get access to an expert second opinion. This is great for both new pre-qualifications and loans that are already in progress.
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