When is the Filing Deadline for a Florida Homestead Tax Exemption?

Florida Homestead Tax Exemptions for each year must be filed by March 1 unless that day falls on a Sunday.  For 2020, the exemption needs to be filed by March 2, 2020, since March 1, 2020 is a Sunday.   

Where Can I File for a Florida 2020 Homestead Tax Exemption?

When is the Filing Deadline for a Florida Homestead Tax ExemptionHomestead exemptions may be filed in person in the property appraiser’s office in which the property is located.  Additionally, Homestead Tax Exemptions may also be filed online – please visit the website of the local property assessor to get started with an online filing.

For instance, Orange County, Florida residents can begin the online filing process here.  This page also provides a list of the documents needed, as well as how to get started with the process by obtaining a login and the Declaration of Domicile (which must be completed before the Homestead Tax Exemption filing can be made).

What are the Benefits of Filing for a Homestead Tax Exemption in Florida?

The benefits for filing for a Homestead Tax Exemption in Florida include:

  • Tax Savings on your real estate tax bill. Under Florida’s Homestead Tax Exemption, Florida residents (those making Florida their principal home) are entitled to a homestead tax exemption of up to $50,000.  Of this amount, the first $25,000 applies to all property taxes (which includes property taxes for schools).  The additional exemption possibility (up to $25,000) applies to non-school taxes.
  • Annual cap on tax assessment increases limited to 3% per year. Non-tax homestead properties do not have a limit on tax assessment increases in Florida.  As a result, taxes can be increased substantially beyond the 3% per year limitation that applies to tax homestead properties.  Under the Save Our Homes Assessment Limitation and Portability Transfer (“Save Our Homes”), assessment increases are limited to the lesser of 3% or the percent change in the Consumer Price Index.  Importantly, under the Save Our Homes program, Florida residents moving from one home to another home may be eligible to “port” their homestead exemption to the new home.

The homestead exemption itself protects homeowners from having to sell their home to satisfy the debts of non-property interest creditors.  Thus a credit card company cannot force a person with a homestead exemption to sell their house, but a bank having a mortgage on a house can still foreclose upon and sell the house if the homeowner does not pay their mortgage.

What Information Do I Need to Provide as Part of Seeking a Homestead Tax Exemption?

For Florida property owners who may be applying for the first time, generally a driver’s license and other information evidencing home ownership and the intent to make Florida their primary residence.

To show this intent, items like vehicle registration, voter registration, bank statements, and similar other documents evidencing Florida residency may need to be shown.  For a list of such documents, please click here.  Other documents may also be necessary depending upon the documents required by a specific county assessor’s office.

Do You Need Help in Filing or Determining Whether You are Eligible for Florida Tax Homestead Exemption?

If so, please feel free to call or reach out to our firm – we can help.

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