How to apply for homestead exemption in Florida

If you have a property in the United States, specifically in the State of Florida, you have probably heard about the homestead exemption, so here we will tell you the details and show you how to apply.

But if you don’t know what a homestead exemption is; Today we will explain how to apply for the homestead exemption in Florida and what benefits home taxes can offer you.

According to the Diario de las Américas American households spend an average of $2,149 on home property taxes each year, so a homestead exemption would be a godsend for you.

Homestead Exemption

How to apply for homestead exemption in Florida

The homestead exemption is a benefit offered by the State of Florida to owners of real estate.

The utility or benefit of the homestead exemption consists of the reduction of the deductible taxes on your home; as long as you are the owner of the property at the beginning of the fiscal year, that is, on January 1 of the current year.

The housing tax is usually determined by calculating the expense of the tax period, divided by the taxable value of the property, resulting in the tax rate.

So the state of Florida offers an exemption of US$25,000 to real estate valued at or below US$50,000.

The most curious thing is that if you maintain the value of your house in an amount lower than US $50,000; You can apply this exemption to other taxes, including school district taxes.

If the value of your house is between US$50,000 and US$75,000, you have the option of applying for an additional exemption of US$25,000, that is, you would end up obtaining a homestead exemption of US$50,000. Amazing, right?

The bad news is that by obtaining these types of exemptions for your home in Florida; You would not be able to claim this exemption for school district taxes like those who assess the value of their home at amounts less than $50,000.

What are the requirements to apply for the homestead exemption? in Florida?

Any homeowner applying for a Homestead Exemption will need:

  • The driver’s license and in the event that you do not drive; you can present your Florida State Citizen ID.
  • Register your car in Florida.
  • Florida voter ID or voter registration card (if you are a voter)
  • Immigration documents, only if you are not a US citizen.

It is important to remember that when you deliver the documents, each of them must reflect the address of your family property, because only then will you truly verify that the property is your property.

You must submit the homestead exemption application by March 1, being able to choose the following forms of request:

E-file system or electronic filing

To file a homestead application through an E-file or electronic filing system, simply log in with your username and password to the Florida Property Appraisal System and follow the steps to then complete the exemption application form that is available and that it indicates the page to you.

physical mail

You can download and print the exemption request form that is available in the Property Appraisal System; complete it and send it via postal service to the address of the property appraiser in your county, within the State of Florida.

presentation in person

It is possible that within your county there is a property appraisal service center, where you could go and file your homestead exemption application in person.

Is it necessary to apply for a homestead exemption every year?

The answer is simple, you do not need to apply again for a homestead exemption once you have applied for the first time.

What you do need is to keep your homestead exemption status up to date in case you sell the property, change your home or have to divide it due to marriage, divorce or death.

Your home exemption is renewed annually; as long as you qualify for it. After January 1 of each year, the Florida Department of Revenue (FDR) will send you a homestead exemption receipt in the mail to confirm your renewal.

In case you no longer apply for the homestead exemption, you must notify it, otherwise it would lead to unwanted fines.

What happens if I rent my property to someone else?

If you own a property and you rent it to a third party for less than 30 days, you can keep the homestead exemption, on the condition that you rent it after January 1 of the current year.

Now, if for 2 consecutive years you rent your home for more than 30 days or in 1 year you rent it for 6 months; without a doubt, you will lose the option to qualify for a property exemption.

Under Florida State Statutes 196.061 and 196.011, homeowners must notify the Property Appraiser’s Office when their home no longer qualifies for the exemption. Failure to do so could result in a Homestead Tax Lien with a significant penalty and interest.

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