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Real Property & Personal Property Tax

Real Estate Tax

Although the State of Florida does not collect property taxes, local governments receive much of their funding through property taxes. These rates are assessed at the local level and vary by county and municipality. They are based on the value of the property which is assessed and updated annually. Florida allows several exemptions in which to reduce the burden:

  • Homestead Exemption is available on your primary residence in Florida. This exemption applies to reduce the taxable value of the property up to $50,000. However, only the first $25,000 of this exemption applies to all taxes. The remaining $25,000 only applies to non-school taxes.
  • Widow Exemptions of $500 are available to widows and widowers who have not remarried. If you were divorced at the time of your ex-spouse’s death, you do not qualify for this exemption.
  • Senior Citizen Exemptions are valued up to a maximum of $50,000 for residents 65 years old and older who have gross income below $20,000 in 2001 dollars, adjusted for inflation. This exemption applies in addition to the Homestead Exemption.
  • Blind Person Exemptions of $500 are available to Floridians who are legally blind.
  • Total and Permanent Disability Exemptions are available for homeowners who have a total and permanent disability. Quadriplegics who use their property as a homestead are exempt from all property taxes. Others who must use a wheelchair for mobility may also be exempt from property taxes.
  • Veterans Exemptions exist in a number of different forms and are available in each county’s property appraiser’s office. Contact your county government for further information.

Documentary Stamp Taxes are assessed on documents that transfer interest in Florida real property, such as warranty deeds and quit claim deeds. Additional taxes are charged for fuels, tobacco products, communications services, and more. For a full of account of taxes charged in Florida, see the website. There are also documentary stamps and intangible tax on obligations such as notes and mortgages.

Foreign Investment in Real Property Tax Act (FIRPTA)

FIRPTA is an acronym for the Foreign Investment in Real Property Tax Act of 1980. FIRPTA is a federally imposed tax law that requires U.S. income tax to be paid on real estate being sold by non-US citizens. To be in compliance with FIRPTA, technically the buyer is required to file IRS form 8288 within 20 days of the closing on the sale. When submitting the form, 10% of the total purchase price must be included as payment to the IRS by the seller. If you are not familiar with this law and it applies to your real estate transaction, you may be levied penalties in addition to the ten percent owed. Although there are a few exceptions, in general, it is important to be familiar with FIRPTA and to consult with appropriate legal or tax professionals to ensure compliance.

Personal Property Tax

Tangible Personal Property (TPP) means all goods, chattels, and other articles of value (excluding some vehicular items) capable of manual possession and whose chief value is intrinsic to the article itself. Inventory and household goods are excluded. Anyone who owns Tangible Personal Property on January 1 and any sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation, or self-employed agent or a contractor, must file a tangible personal property return to the property appraiser by April 1 each year. If you have questions about if you need to file personal property taxes, please contact our office.

Call Koontz & Parkin, CPAs in Sarasota, Florida for Guidance Regarding Property Taxes.

Jo Ann M. Koontz and Marina Parkin offer a powerful combination of in-depth

knowledge of tax regulations, a firm grasp of the business world, and years of experience representing clients. To schedule a consultation, call the Sarasota office of Koontz & Parkin, CPAs at 941.328.3993.