As you’re no doubt painfully aware, your Florida home is subject to local property taxes – year in and year out. Of course, you want to make sure that you’re not overpaying. So how can you reduce your property tax burden?
There are two main ways. The first method is available to all homeowners. The second depends on whether you meet certain qualifications. If you meet those qualifications, you can seek tax relief using both methods.
You may know that the Florida authorities compute your property tax by multiplying your home’s taxable value by the tax rate.
Example: The tax appraiser has placed a taxable value of $200,000 on the Petersons’ home. If the tax rate is 1%, the Petersons will owe $2,000 in property tax.
If you can reduce the taxable value of your home, your property tax bill will be lower.
Example: The Petersons appeal the $200,000 taxable value of their home. The appeals board reduces that value to $150,000. Now, the Petersons owe only $1,500 in property tax.
If you believe that the tax appraiser has misjudged the value of your home – or if the taxable value is higher than that of similar homes in your area – you might want to pursue an appeal. For more information, read Should You Challenge Your Property Tax Assessment in Florida?, and Procedures for Challenging Your Property Tax Assessment in Florida.
Florida allows for reduced property taxes if the homeowner meets certain requirements. The chief programs in Florida are summarized here.
Contact your local tax appraiser for complete details on these and other Florida exemptions, including any required forms you need to complete and the deadline for filing those forms. You can get contact information for the tax appraiser’s office in your county from the Florida Department of Revenue.
Depending on the complexity of your situation, you may want to seek legal help. To find an experienced real estate lawyer in Florida, check out Nolo’s Lawyer Directory.