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Monday, September 15, 2008

What is Amendment 1? "Save Our Homes"

On January 29, citizens of Florida passed Amendment 1. The Amendment has four parts.

The following is a summary of the Amendment 1's tax reform provisions. For more information and details, please see the Florida Department of Revenue (DOR) webpage.

1. Additional $25,000 Homestead Exemption

If you have homestead exemption, do nothing. The exemption will be automatically applied for 2008 on the assessed value between $50,000 and $75,000. It does not apply to school taxes.

2. Portability:

Homestead property owners will be able to transfer their Save Our Homes benefit (up to $500,000) to a new homestead within two years of giving up their previous homestead.

If the just value of the new homestead is more than the previous home's just value, the entire cap value can be transferred.

If the new homestead has a lower just value, the percentage of the accumulated benefit may be transferred to the new homestead.

Homeowners may transfer their SOH benefit to a new homestead anywhere in Florida within two years of leaving their former homesteads. Those who sold their homes in 2007 can transfer their SOH benefit to a new homestead if they establish the new homestead by January 1, 2009. This provision applies to all taxes, including school taxes.

For property owners who have the homestead exemption and the Save Our Homes cap, and who do not give up their homestead, the exemption and cap status remain unchanged.

Click on this link for an example of portability.

Click on this link to learn about the portability calculator.

What to do:

A separate application must be completed by March 1 to qualify for portability.
For those who have already filed for the 2008 homestead exemption and indicated on their application that they had a benefit on a prior Florida home, we will send the application for portability in the mail.
If you already own another property (2nd home, beach house, etc.) and establish your homestead there for 2008, you can remove the homestead from the old property and apply for the portability benefit.


3. Tangible Personal Property Exemption:

A $25,000 exemption is provided for each tangible personal property return. This provision applies to all taxes.

To qualify for the Tangible Personal Property (TPP) exemption, Mobile Home and Business TPP property owners must complete and return to the Property Appraiser their annual Tangible Personal Property Return by April 1.

4. Assessment Cap for Non-Homestead Property

Non-homestead property will have a 10% assessment cap (similar to Save Our Homes). This provision will not take effect until the 2009 tax roll. This provision does not apply to school taxes.

The 10% cap will sunset after 10 years, when it will be presented to the voters for re-approval. Most residential properties will be reassessed at just value when they are sold; commercial property and residential properties with 10 or more units will be reassessed after a significant improvement or a change of ownership.

Property owners will not be required to apply for the cap. We will continue to update the website as information becomes available

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