Thinking of moving to Florida and buying a home? First, consider whether you would be eligible for any property tax exemptions. Florida offers homeowners many property tax exemptions designed to reduce their taxes. Most homeowners are eligible for a homestead exemption on their primary residence, and many homeowners qualify for other property tax discounts based on age, disability, and/or veteran status.
These exemptions won't completely eliminate your Florida property taxes, but they certainly help your pocketbook. Read through the details of each of these Florida property tax exemption programs to determine if you can claim any discounts. If you're eligible, you'll have to file paperwork and get an appraisal. More information is on the Florida Department of Revenue website.
Common Property Tax Exemptions in Florida
The most common available exemptions for Florida homeowners include the following:
- Homestead exemptions for up to $50,000 are available to Florida homeowners on their primary residence. The first $25,000 of this exemption applies to all property taxes and school taxes. The second $25,000 applies to assessed value between $50,000 and $75,000 and to nonschool taxes.
- Widow(er)’s exemptions of $500 are available to non-remarried widows and widowers. In addition, surviving spouses of first responders who died in the line of duty are eligible for a total exemption on homestead property.
- Senior citizen’s exemptions of up to $50,000 are available in certain counties and cities to residents aged 65 and older whose income does not exceed the income limitation. Additional homestead exemptions are available to seniors whose homes are valued at $250,000, who have lived in their home for at least 25 years, and who have income that does not exceed the income limitation.
Disability Exemptions for Florida Homeowners
Residents who have various types of disabilities are eligible for exemptions ranging from $500 to complete relief from property taxes. These exemptions include the following:
- Disability exemptions of $500 are available to Florida homeowners who are totally and permanently disabled.
- Blindness exemptions of $500 are available to legally blind residents.
- Quadriplegic exemptions are available on real estate owned and used as a homestead by a quadriplegic. Such homesteads are completely exempt from property tax.
- Total disability exemptions are available on real estate owned and used as a homestead by a totally and permanently disabled person who must use a wheelchair or is legally blind and meets income requirements. This exemption provides complete relief from property taxes.
Exemptions for Veterans
Special categories of exemptions are available to homeowners in Florida who are veterans of the U.S. military and/or were disabled while in the military service. These exemptions include the following:
- Veteran’s disability exemptions of $5,000 are available to veterans who have at least a 10-percent service-connected disability, as rated by Department of Veterans Affairs. This is not limited to homestead property. A surviving spouse may be eligible to carry over the exemption.
- Combat injury discounts are available to residents age 65 and older who were Florida residents when entering the service, were honorably discharged, and have a combat-related disability. This discount is given as a percentage discount equal to the veteran’s service-connected disability rating.
- Total veteran’s disability exemptions are available to honorably discharged veterans with a service-connected total and permanent disability. This exemption provides total and complete tax relief for all property tax on the veteran’s primary residence as a token of Florida's gratitude for their service. A similar exemption is available to disabled veterans who must use wheelchairs. Surviving spouses of veterans may be able to carry over this exemption.
- Active duty and veterans who use their homes as their primary residence or rent the homestead property while serving elsewhere are eligible for the homestead exemption.
- Active duty and veterans of the military, Coast Guard, reserves, and Florida National Guare deployed outside the United States in the previous calendar year may get a percentage exemption on the home's taxable value.