Now that Amendment 1 was passed, what does it mean for us. Representative Jimmy Patronis sent out an email explaining some of the common questions that keep coming up. Representative Patronis, I appreciate you being proactive in addressing these questions.
Q: When will the changes from Amendment 1 show up on tax bills?
A: For those who are eligible, benefits from portability, the additional homestead exemption and the $25,000 exemption for tangible personal property will start showing up on 2008 tax bills.
Q: How does a person apply for portability?
A: The homesteaded property owner should turn in a completed application to the office of the property appraiser in the county where the new homestead is located. The application is available from local appraisers. They got the forms from the Department of Revenue on Wednesday.
Q: Who’s eligible for portability this year?
A: A person who establishes a new Florida homestead for 2008 and filed to give up the previous homestead sometime after Jan. 1, 2007. In other words, a person who relocated from a homestead last year and is claiming a new homestead for 2008 is eligible. The deadline for 2008 homestead and portability applications is March 1. The portability benefit would show up on the 2008 tax bill.
Q: Who’s eligible for portability after that?
A: Any Florida homesteaded property owner who establishes a new homestead for 2009 or any subsequent year — as long as the person had another valid homestead within two years of establishing the new one.
Q: How much is the portability benefit worth?
A: A homesteaded property owner can transfer up to $500,000 of portability benefit to a new homestead. A person moving to a more expensive home transfers the dollar amount. A person moving to a less expensive home transfers the percentage value.
Q: Is there an application for the additional homestead exemption?
A: No. The additional exemption will be granted automatically to anyone qualifying for a base $25,000 homestead exemption. It applies only if a property’s assessed value exceeds $50,000.
Q: How much is the additional exemption?
A: The exemption is $25,000, but it does not apply to property taxes assessed for local schools. In other words, no additional exemption will be applied to a property’s assessed value for the purposes of levying school taxes.
Q: Do business owners and mobile-home owners with tangible personal property have to apply for the exemption?
A: To receive the exemption, they must file their 2008 returns. If the value of tangible personal property is under $25,000, they will not have to file again the following year.
Q: When does the 10 percent cap on annual assessment increases for most non-homesteaded properties go into effect?
A: It goes into effect in 2009. There will also be an application.
Also, you can read the details of Amendment 1 here.
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