Posted on Friday, November 20th, 2020

homestead exemptionFor those who purchase real estate in Florida with the intent of permanently residing in Florida, the state’s homestead tax exemption offers some great incentives. A financial tool allowing homeowners in the Sunshine State to reduce their real estate tax burden, it is something you should certainly learn more about if you own and permanently reside on Florida property. If you’re ready to do so, here is how an experienced Orlando real estate attorney such as Nishad Khan P.L. can be of assistance.

Explaining the Florida Homestead Exemption

Simply put, the Florida homestead tax exemption is a tool that can possibly reduce your home’s taxable value by up to $50,000. Based on your home’s assessed value at the time that you purchase the property, Florida homestead tax exemptions are offered within certain value limits. For example, for the first $50,000 of assessed value, $25,000 of the assessed value is exempted from the real property tax calculation. Between $25,000-$50,000, full real property taxes will be due and owing. However, for the amount between $50,000-$75,000 of the assessed value, another $25,000 will be exempted, subject to any school levies on taxes. Finally, for any assessed value over $75,000, you will once again pay full real property taxes, unless you qualify for certain other tax benefits, such as being 65 years of age or older, disabled, or perhaps a military veteran. Since you may have questions as to how your home’s value has been assessed, don’t take anything for granted regarding homestead exemptions in Florida, since there are thousands of dollars at stake. Instead, consult with a real estate lawyer the residents of Orlando trust to give them excellent advice on this topic.

property ownerWho Can Apply for this Exemption?

Since most people who own property in Florida naturally want to be eligible for this exemption, it is crucial you understand the eligibility requirements for your particular property. Generally, there are three specific criteria you must meet to be considered eligible for the exemption, which is:

• The property should be owned by a “Natural Person”
• The property should be used as your permanent residence and you should intend to permanently reside on the property
• You must live at the property as of January 1st of the applicable tax year for which you are seeking the homestead tax exemption

If you have questions as to whether you are eligible for the Florida homestead exemption, discuss your concerns with an Orlando real estate lawyer.

How to Get the Exemption

To get the exemption, you are required to fill out and submit an application by March 1st of the year in which you seek to claim the homestead tax exemption. The application form entitled “DR-501” may be submitted online or mailed to your local County Property Appraiser’s Office. In addition, you will need to provide proof of your Florida residence by providing certain documents, which may include, a Florida driver’s license, a bank statement, a utility bill, an executed declaration of domicile, a voter ID card, or some other form of acceptable documentation. If questions have arisen as to your eligibility for the exemption, don’t assume you have no alternative but to accept this decision. Rather, hire an Orlando real estate attorney and let them examine the details of your case.

Keeping the Exemption

Once you are approved for the Florida homestead tax exemption, you of course want to do everything necessary to keep it. In Florida, so long as you continue to permanently reside on the property, you won’t have to reapply for the homestead tax exemption each year. Instead, unless you cancel the exemption or move to another property, it is automatically renewed each year. However, if you are no longer eligible for the exemption due to a change in the property’s ownership or other circumstances, you are responsible for informing your local Property Appraiser’s office of these changes. Failure to do so may result in revocation of your homestead exemption and may further subject you to additional sanctions as imposed by your local Property Appraiser’s office.

Since Florida homestead tax exemptions can save you thousands of dollars each year, make sure you know how to properly apply for the exemption. Since varying amounts of documentation will be needed to gain a homestead tax exemption, work with an experienced and knowledgeable attorney who handles these cases on a regular basis.

Schedule a consultation today with a real estate lawyer Orlando trusts such as Nishad Khan P.L. to learn more.